“While making deities of goddess Durga, the sculptors take a pinch of soil from the yard of sex workers and add it to the clay dough. It’s a ritual that has been followed religiously for ages. How will this goddess save her followers? How does society treat prostitutes? Do they enjoy freedom of expression at all? Does patriarchy allow equal rights to women at-large? A female god with a hint of a brothel is no god: she prefers to keep silent even when women are abused. Perhaps, she knows that a woman’s voice will not be heard. In a recent interview with The New Indian Express, I said that worshipping a female deity has hardly altered our society’s attitude towards women. You see, when people worship Durga, they don’t remember the failure of the male gods who were unsuccessful in defeating the invincible demon, Mahishasura. It’s meant to be like that—failures of men are best ignored.” — Kiriti Sengupta in the Colorado Review

Like Blake, Sengupta transfuses his intrinsic romanticism into a profoundly spiritual, and gloriously beautiful, experience. Sengupta’s poetry lends itself to a transcendentalist reading. The essence of Emerson’s “Over-Soul” permeates the poems. His images are drawn from nature, and he often describes daily life, yet, an unmistakable divine spirit, an “over-soul” is present in the pieces. — The Hollins Critic

His poems are, to some extent, an epiphany where existence precedes essence. Sengupta’s poems stand out for depicting the divergent roads—from dark alleys to luminous lanes. The unrhymed verses stand out to portray the bewitching and the fascinating, and readers feel the tremor while going through the turbulent poetic waves. — Colorado Review

Kiriti’s Blog – STRAIGHT BAT

Initiation into Self-realization

September 29th, 2021|1 Comment

Initiation into Self-realization Kiriti Sengupta A preamble excerpted with permission from Sadhana: the realisations of life by Rabindranath Tagore, published by CLASSIX (an imprint of Hawakal Publishers) I was pleasantly surprised as a few weeks ago, [...]

Poems that Heal and Empower

June 7th, 2020|0 Comments

As I began working on Hibiscus, I advised my co-editors, Anu Majumdar and Dustin Pickering, to send me a few verses on the chosen theme. To maintain ethical standards, I didn’t publish them, nor did I [...]

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For a trilogy in Indian English poetry, Kiriti Sengupta deserves mention. And the manner in which Kiriti establishes his connections in the three books is essentially romantic. A very subjective Kiriti upholds his trilogy with a perfect combination of mimesis, pragmatism, expression, and objectivity. It becomes indeed necessary to state that we found such romantic balance earlier only in Keats. But here, Kiriti is an Indian. — Muse India

Sengupta’s poetry is far removed from so-called divine seeking. His poems are more akin to the Upanishads—they observe, they analyze, they probe deeper into the very essence of phenomena, and then, they raise questions that remarkably look out for truths. I say truths and not The Truth because Sengupta is aware that there exists not a single truth, but multiple meanings that can be drawn from the essence of our reality. — The Critical Flame

[Sengupta] becomes an “observer” who is an intrinsic part of the historical time within which he finds himself. [He] is an observer not just of the social milieu around him, but also displays an uncanny ability to examine his own body, mind, family relationships, and the rituals surrounding each one of them, all while displaying a touch of amusement at his own small vanities. — Rain Taxi Review

Sengupta presents the reader with a paradigm of humanist materialism sometimes using the language of scriptures. Life itself is full of mysteries, so a quest for the immaterial unknown is not necessary. The writer is spirit and his oeuvre is always in the state of Becoming. Sengupta’s writing assumes many structural dynamics. From Cubism, Sengupta parallels the technique of restructuring reality according to definite patterns. Sengupta’s use of cryptic idiom is frequently noted in criticism. — The Statesman

Ethos Literary Journal

Kiriti Sengupta partners with Bitan Chakraborty, founder of Hawakal Publishers, to produce Ethos Literary Journal (ELJ) and Ethos Literary Festival (ELF). ELF is an annual bilingual literary event held in Calcutta. Ethos Literary Journal (ELJ) aims to reflect the truest ethos of the current times—the quintessential yet varied, fast-diversifying yet emblematic, “spirit,” so to speak, of the exciting, post-modernist times we are living in. We intend to depict the collective consciousness and the collective intellect of the era by recognizing, publishing, and representing a wide array of diversified voices from around the globe. We are committed to publishing new, emerging, as well as well-known writers, as long as the contents move us in a way only “honest” literature can. We are a bi-annual literary journal, curating poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and book & film reviews But then, there may be a special issue or two.

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Sengupta’s poems occasionally dwell on the seamy side of our existence and thus impel readers to identify the agony hidden under the veiled rapture of human life. History comes out as a living entity in some of [his] poems; he envisions India as a country bearing the pain of the Partition, blood oozing out of its soul. — World Literature Today

He reminds us that the actions we take — day in, day out — are a small part of a larger paradigm of the natural world. No matter one’s affiliation or background, Sengupta ultimately leaves us the lasting message that we should find meaning in what comes our way and extend those values into the future. — Athena (Moria Online)

Clearly, [Sengupta] is a poet of imagination and breadth. His vision is beyond the measure of countless poets across the world that comes up short in their writing because they lack proper scope. Sengupta catches the Spirit as it drifts. Like monarch butterflies tacked to a sheet, he fixes on the Spirit and studies it. Whether it is called the “Holy Spirit,” the “Zeitgeist,” the “Apocalypse,” or many countless names, the power of the Universal Spirit changes lives and brings them to fruition. To become a poet, it takes not only imagination and dedication, but also vision and wisdom. Only revelations from the Muse can provide such vision and wisdom as makes for immortal poetry. — Cafe Dissensus