Of spring delayed. Climate Change. Women and their Writing

Sunil Sharma
March is attended by anticipation and delight.
A month in transition.

the threshold to spring, after a long and bitter winter, and herald of transformation of physical and spiritual worlds.

In Mumbai, winter is short relief. Spring is always welcome. The festival of Holi brings cheers, camaraderie and vibrancy to a cosmopolitan city on the move.
March signals a remarkable change. Drab becomes colourful.

In Toronto---and elsewhere in North America---spring is getting late. 
Delayed by the old man winter that refuses to vacate and loves to overstay!
The snow and arctic air make the winter's presence felt in a chilling way. The daily scene changes fast.

It is a return to the dead of winter, when frigid air hits and there is blowing snow---more predicted for the upcoming April---you know it is December in March!
Winter says he arrived late and will linger on.
All this is happening around---altered rhythm of seasons---regularly now and for years together but the world no longer pays attention to these cyclical disruptions of great import.
Blame it on climate change!
It is the new cliché, blaming it on nature!

Relevant to recall the prophetic Wordsworth:

If this belief from heaven be sent,
If such be Nature’s holy plan,
Have I not reason to lament
What man has made of man?

(From: “Lines written in early spring")

Humans refuse to see the drastic vagaries in nature and engage with the grim reality of this unfolding catastrophe created by their species only; something urgent must to address this, before it goes out of control.

Of late, Climate Lit has highlighted the tragic consequences of tampering with nature but more creative engagements needed.
March is also celebration of Woman-power via poetry by some top-form women poets.
Poets, through their intervention and poetic idiom, trying to create inspiring visions and templates.

This year’s theme is reflective of the spirit and resilience in the roles women play in community and society: “Winging through Gloom: Poetry of Hope and Recovery”.

Noted poet-presenter Padmaja Paddy-Iyengar was kind enough to guest-edit the fourth annual edition by inviting signatures that can motivate the readers facing challenges in the pandemic-hit times and give hope to overcome the allied anxieties and vulnerabilities. 
She selected 21 poets to participate by responding to the theme given.
As usual, their works are uplifting in nature and scope.
A Setu initiative for the due recognition of women, their writing and a rich contribution to society through words, images and musical sounds---poetry at its best.

Elsewhere, you will find the link to the readings by select women poets on the theme of “Dare to fly”, video poetry that will again make you feel elevated.
Another important Setu presentation!

The other regular features are there.

We remain grateful to the editor Padmaja and all the contributors for making this issue, another special one.

Read on!

Sunil Sharma
Editor, Setu (English)
Toronto, Canada

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