Poetry: Voices Within 2019: Guest Editor’s Note

Gopal Lahiri: Guest Editor
It’s always a challenging task to identify the different voices in a poem. The poetic voices are always rooted in some characteristic elements which brings an edgy energy. Different voices in poetry can also be like instruments in an orchestra, adding coatings of sound and tone.

For this, I am extending my sincere gratitude to Dr. Sunil Sharma, the editor of the English Section of Setu, the bilingual literary journal, published from Pittsburgh, USA, for giving me the opportunity to guest edit the special poetry section titled ‘Voices Within’ where the best poems of the established as well as young Indian Poets writing in English are included.

Robert Frost once said ‘Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words’. It’s in fact none of a poem’s effects function in isolation. But it’s also true that the total of all the separate parts can in no way add up to the functioning whole. But it’s the act of analysis that may be revealing

It’s quite natural that even a poet is also speaking in different voices. In this collection titled ‘Voices Within’, some poems are strikingly inward, some makes hidden regions visible, some traces the sound wave paths within where the self dissolves into many voices. Some poems are meditative, humane and moving.

The unsentimental language and the arrangement of words and phrases, the breadth of form and content, the range of imagery and craft - all roll into a perfect poem. Poetry is all about understanding- not everyone reads a poem the same way, and that is the prettiness and truth of it all.

There are no themes in particular for this endeavor but emphasis is given on strong imagery, innovative style and syntax. Selecting poems amongst many isn’t an easy task and long debates ensue silently in your mind - on which poems more than the others. Sometimes there is disappointment when one of your fellow poets doesn’t make the cut.

It’s really heartening to note that the response for this initiative by ‘Setu’ is overwhelming. I am indebted to all the poets for sending their poems written to the best of their capabilities. But not all the poems are in tune with the poetic elements which I am looking for. Unfortunately, I do not feel that all the submissions for ‘Voices Within’ are suitable for publication but do however urge the poets to forward those poems onto other publications in order that as many as possible are able to read. Some of the Bios are edited to make them brief.

A compilation of this size is often said to contain something for everybody and I am sure most of these poems will be endearing to the readers. Admittedly, in this one, every reader is sure to find something to take away. ‘Voices Within’ holds enough evidence to support that claim.

Gopal Lahiri

Poetry: Voices Within: Authors

1. Ambika Ananth
2. Amit Shankar Saha
3. Aneek Chatterjee
4. Abu Siddik
5. Anuradha Bhattacharyya
6. Ayaz Rasool Nazki
7. Ballari Sen
8. Basudhara Roy
9. Bhaskaranand Jha Bhaskar
10. Chandni Santosh
11. Debendra Sahu
12. Deepak CJ Malakar
13. Gopa Bhattacharjee
14. Hema Ravi
15. Jagari Mukherjee
16. Jamiel Ahmad
17. Kanwar Dinesh Singh
18. Kiriti Sengupta
19. Kushal Poddar
20. K.S. Subramanian
21. Lopamudra Banerjee
22. Molly Joseph
23. Moinak Dutta
24. Mushtaque B Barq
25. Nishi Pulugurtha
26. Nandita Samanta
27. Neetu Vaid Sharma
28. Padmaja Iyengar-Paddy
29. Parneet Jaggi
30. Pitambar Naik
31. Purabi Bhattacharya
32. Raja Chakraborty
33. Ranjana Sharan Sinha
34. Rizwana Parveen
35. Santosh Bakaya
36. Sanjeev Sethi
37. Sangeeta Sharma
38. Sarala Ram Kamal
39. Sanhita Sinha
40. Saikat Gupta Majumdar
41. Sandeep Gupta
42. Shree
43. Sharmila Ray
44. Shristi Sharma
45. Sanjiban Roy
46. Tapeshwar Prasad
47. Vinita Agrawal
48. Wani Nazir


  1. Congratulations Gopal on the wonderful accomplishment. The gather of so many isn't easy. Thank you for allowing all these writers to be a part of Setu.


  2. Sir, kudos, congratulations for your excellent labour of love. Under your care 48 Voices come to Setu platform together. Happy to see your devotion and sincerity and artistic skills.

  3. This is indeed a commendable effort. Hats off to you for the accomplishment of this humongous task. Happy to see my poems also rubbing shoulders with some unque.compelling voices. Thanks a ton and all the best for your future endeavors.

  4. Thanks to the effort of Setu and Gopal Lahiri an excellent compilation of 48 poets find spaces in Setu-Jan 2019.
    My congrats to the poets featured herein.


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