Ananta Madhavan


What Is A Poem? - Poem by Ananta Madhavan

Snapshots of moments, that's what poems are.
Some people are keener of the camera.
'I am a camera'. Think of a person
Whose head is a camera, adjusting his ear-knobs.

A poem is a tone of voice that is heard.
The poet is a ventriloquist;
Listen to the tone and the timbre.

Another thought: a poem is like a tree
With trunk, roots, branches, leaves
And its own peculiar identity.

A poem has two lives and many deaths:
First, what it is born with,
Outlasting its coffin in a lost notebook
Or an untouched book.

The second life is public,
The life breathed into it when read by someone
Who is also a poet.

We too have secret and public lives.

Topic(s) of this poem: poems


Poet's Notes about The Poem

Written in my learning years, around 1960.

Comments about What Is A Poem? by Ananta Madhavan

  • Rajnish Manga (3/26/2015 3:19:00 AM)


    Thanks for this wonderful poem on the craft of writing a poem. The concluding lines lead us to a fantastic two pronged theory of fate of a poem, one- its burial and two- its acclaim as you have rightly said: Outlasting its coffin in a lost notebook /..... / The life breathed into it when read by someone. (Report) Reply

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  • Kelly Kurt (3/26/2015 1:20:00 AM)


    A very good poem. thank you for sharing. (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, March 26, 2015



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