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I cannot bear to look, as if its sight is fearsome Whenever brightens the gem of my consciousness, All my ties, it seems, will be torn apart: Family society religion are nothing but trifling matters — this whole life. From this time to the one before and ahead of us I listen, dazed, To the song of a wounded poet — the impending victory of poetry indeed.

While Das expands his journey into history from the whole of South Asia to the civilisations of Persia and Egypt to make his extraordinary post-colonial case, Mahmud narrows his journey down to the ancient cities of Bangladesh, India and Pakistan, and always takes along a non-Aryan woman with whom he explores the thousand-year-old non-Aryan history of his ancestors to carve out a revolutionary route to the future.

But he cannot start out on the journey ahead without his love for the non-Aryan woman remaining unconsummated.

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Bones culled after digging a mountain of stones With exploded eyes I behold the rusty skull of my kin; A feeling of affection grows in me, so I shake the dust off it And take it in my hands — archetypal blood, as if, throbs through us. Sometimes the tip of a spear while some other times an arrow made of stone Jewellery used by women from a time when humans hunted and gathered — You can contemplate as much as you want while you are standing here You can dig up how deep history courses through your blood.

Down the contours of his face walks the cold of solemnity While you and I, standing beside the sculpture of Buddha, gaze unblinkingly into each other — A sense of placidity is ingrained deep in our blood. Only we are speechless, with the primitive scattered hesitatingly around us. His ideas of love and revolution and history and time find the most artistic, mature and balanced expression in Sonali Kabin. He failed to use religion as a means in his art to further enrich and diversify his writing, like Rabindranath Tagore and Kazi Nazrul Islam had.

When Mahmud criticised the Awami League government for some of their actions in post-independence Bangladesh, he faced incarceration and immense political pressure. Many in Bangladesh believed that his response to the Awami League went hand in hand with his tectonic ideological shift.

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The controversy had started when he had gone so far as to endorse the brutal assassination of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, but it knew no bounds when he attended receptions accorded to him by the Jamaat-e-Islami, the party that had killed thousands of freedom fighters and Hindus in Ever since then, many poetry and literature lovers had something of a tense relationship with Al Mahmud. Needless to say, I was one of them. But for those of us who work in the field of literature for the love of it, this resulted in an ambivalence that perhaps explains my procrastination about meeting Mahmud.

Be that as it may, few can deny that the poems he wrote up to and including his book Mayabi Porda Dule Utho The Swinging of an Elusive Veil , , are among the best in modern Bangla literature. There were also numerous excellent poems among the ones that came after this book.

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Come step on the land and Embrace me in your salted arms instead. Leave your dress so blue! Your eyes are fraught with bubbles of the sea. Is your heart coloured as deeply as the skies?

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Your heart is like those seagulls Spreading wings over the waves! Why do you care so much about the sand on these shores? Come dive into the waters instead! Low Self-Esteem. And More Slam Poetry About Social Issues.

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Things tend to be much dirtier than they appear on the outside. Social issues are touchy and sensitive.

Writing poetry about society is a bit of a double edge sword - poetry is a great medium for voicing opinion, but care needs to be taken in order to incorporate facts rather than myths into the prose. Much of the spoken word poems here are performance poetry pieces, meant to arouse an audience and juxtapose a connection.

I hope you will find that connection within one of these slam poems.

Oswald, the winner of the TS Eliot, Costa and Griffin prizes, was backed by the most supporters, with throwing their weight behind her, including former poet laureate Andrew Motion, novelist Mark Haddon and biographer and academic Hermione Lee. Yorkshire poet McMillan, whose debut Physical celebrated the male body and won him the Guardian first book award as well as a host of nominations for other major prizes, counts 84 supporters, while the British-Canadian poet Todd Swift has Each contender now has until 20 June to canvas Oxford graduates for their votes.

Their opening sallies will be made on Thursday, as all three publish statements staking their claim on a role that was inaugurated in , and has been held by Matthew Arnold, WH Auden and Robert Graves.