Soul Making

- Reviewed by Jaydeep Sarangi

Amour: Hymans to Aphrodite
Author: Joie Bose
Publisher: Authorspress, New Delhi
Year: 2020
Pages 131
ISBN 978-93-89615-33-3


At the time of global pandemic, poems on secured love and longing don’t come with an expiry date. Amour: Hymans to Aphrodite is love’s lyrical monsoon! Union of souls and lovers merging in one are the major themes given in this collection. The poetess has layered these subtle aspects with variegated, yet captivating metaphors and similes of natural objects and innate f relationships:
“A child on the wind, heaven
Is transforming into you. I am
Fleeing into you.” (Love XI, p. 32)

 The poems in this unique collection are primarily concerned with the speaker’s love for her significant other and vice versa. She adores the beauty of things and expresses her pull of love for her implied lover. For Joie, love is a private awareness. The poet’s love is so deep-rooted that it will stay forever no matter what happens:
“Artists will die; their art shall remain-
And love be immortal, when the lovers are slain.” (Love XII, p. 33)

Love demands courtship—that is, action. Love witnesses fearless history of the lovers. In the poem, ‘Love LXVIII’ Joie says,
“Love is a reactive force, the eye of a tornado—
It draws you, sucks you in
Love consumes you.” (p. 98)
Here love is more than a force. It transpires in a touch. Joie exclaims,
“We loved so much, so fast
We traversed all the stages.” (Love LXXIII, p. 104)
This ‘chicken neck’ (out of ordinary) vision is rather symbolic of the heart-to-heart connect. To the burden of love—if the lovers are not oxygen for each other, they are nothing. This is so comforting when the world is undergoing a precarious living. For Joie Bose, no rice will grow where love doesn’t rain. Therefore, love is so basic to survival.
Joie’s book is armed with love, fortitude and hope. Joie has also used some literary elements in her poems to show the beauty of the beloved and the intensity of her love:
“I don’t know
I don’t care. I do
Simply love. To insanity.” (Love LXXXII, p. 116)
Use of punctuations is a important poetic tool for the poet. She takes highest energy out of this. It also creates motion within a sentence to reflect love as a continuous form. It is linear.
Joie Bose is an intelligent soul-maker. Her poems speak to the heart in their own universal language. Girl Power is just a nineties way of saying it. Now feminism is inherently intersectional feminism – we are in a place of multiple feminisms. Interpretation is a whirlwind of views, experiences, acceptance and grievances. Joie’s lover is bold, honest and intelligent, who trusts her male lover. Joie clearly asserts, “ No marketing between us anymore.”(p.77)

The job of the poet consists of placing those objects of the visible world which have become invisible due to the glue of occurrences, in an unusual position which strikes the soul and gives them a tragic force. Poems in this quirky collection are record of deep seated questioning minds carrying reverberations within:
“The heart beats; you feel it
Your face, body, et al
It contracts in fear.” (Love LXXVII, p. 110)
Poems in this collection are intimate as life, as love and the death.


Joie is a sensuous mystique. Her surprises unfold the casket of mysteries. Her act of love harbours ‘sweet nothings’. But, it leads to actions of the hearts. She experiments with human minds, beyond tangibles. Poems in this collection amalgamate arresting imagery with illogical, yet poetically logical:
“Metal holds metal together—
My fuel is my love and I, a machine
To strange suns.” (Love LXVII, p. 97)

For Joie Bose, love is a language. Lovers claim, ‘The night is beautiful.’ The love poet falls in love with the poem she writes.
“Go away. It’s tough
The bear me. It’s tough
To go away.” (Love LXXXI, p. 115)
Joie doesn’t worry about sounding contemporary. She has one boat to steer. She doesn’t write for the marginalized or social issues of the time. She has nothing to give for the politicians. Her plate is full with love, and love. She thinks that love can make and love can break things and people. Love is a healing touch. She allows nothing to come between her and her the love poems. For Joie, love is not just rushing into relationship. It allows time to the lovers. It builds up around likes and dislikes. Love is being someone’s force and love can be found in small gestures and subtle advances. Love is never free from expectations:
“I would walk with you
After dinner, if I could
But you’re done with dinner(,)” (Love LXXX, p. 114)
The last poem of the collection is a soul’s spanking weather. Reading this magical poem is like falling in love with poetry intangibly, without our notice. We are startled the rare sweet free flow of cadence:
“Love, if you’re born of betrayal, be true to it—
Be kind to me, love—keep our love bitter sweet.” (Love XCIV, p. 131)
As a poet, she takes to writing overwhelmed by the fragility and vulnerability of emotive communication in the everyday world, and by the inevitability of it all. She hopes, through her poems, to unsettle received meanings, to bring new experiential truths to the reader , and to build a few bridges across time, antennas, and whispers. We are but to accept that God is present in love poetry. Joie Bose Gives herself completely to this art.
Joie’s poems are armed with love, grit, fortitude, nostalgia and hopes. Clay, wax, wood, bronze, stone, harmonium- materials the artist laid her hands on with her consummate artistry in brilliance cadence. Her mode is not confessional. She doesn’t think biology as destiny. She makes her own space by her assertive love proclamations:
“Love doesn’t see night or hill
Run with me, Lamb. I am seeking
Paradise.” (Love LXVI, p. 96)
Poetry is one among the ways in which we can explore the possible entries into heaven during the hard times. Nothing can stop the flow of the heart—love! Joie’s poetic lines prove it again. Her vision of love is like a post rain rainbow.
Light of love within is our soul’s dress. It grows intangibly. The love poet in Amour: Hymans to Aphrodite falls in love with her poetic form. She discovers beauty in ashes and endings of things. Joie Bose’s poems are for love and lovers of love. God with His brush! Most of the poems in this anthology are finely crafted moments, and take us towards that compelling intersection of the conversational and the metaphysical.
Home of Magic! Matches found!

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Jaydeep Sarangi is a widely anthologized and reviewed bilingual poet with eight collections in English latest being Heart Raining the Light (2020) released in Rome. Sarangi has read his poems and delivered invited talks on new poetry in different shores of the globe. His later readings were at Flinders University, University of Western Australia, University of South Australia,University of Wollongong, Perth Poetry Club(Australia), University of Udine(Italy)and University of Rezeszow(Poland). Sarangi is on the editorial boards of different journals featuring poetry and articles on poetry like Mascara Literary Review, Transnational Literature, (Australia), Teesta, WEC(India). Among his recent awards, the Setu Award of Excellence for 2019(Petersburg, USA). He is guest editing a special issue(Oct. 2020) for TEXT(Australia). He is a professor of English and principal at New Alipore College, Kolkata. Email: jaydeepsarangi@gmail.com

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