Copyright©Yogesh Patel & all respective copyright holders of the material published
The highly expected not happening is also a Black Swan. *
Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Look into your own history –
exile from family, friends, country,
betrayed by those you placed your faith in,
always living at the margins.
Yet nothing, yes nothing in your past
pointed to the unfurling of the present.
What has been, what might have been
two fractured landmasses drifting in time
acquiring individual perspectives;
not parallel lines meeting in infinity.
You wander down lanes of lives never lived,
reconciling what might have been with reality.
Is there free will? you ask as you sink
failing to swim against the tide; knowing
only dead fish swim with the stream.
Immense possibilities only appear
to be evenly distributed; not knowing the odds
we take risks, act against the gods.
There is no way of knowing what we don’t know.
No way of protecting us against uncertainty,
We build theories like terracotta armies
fallible guesses from fragmentary information,
success or failure being always retrospective.
Our limitations echo in memory
rearing up in dreams of the seemingly impossible,
our own lives, elegant black swans, in full flight….
In his book, The Black Swan, Nassim Nicholas Taleb refers to an event with rarity, extreme impact, and retrospective predictability as a Black Swan. According to him, “a small number of Black Swans explain almost everything in our world, from the success of ideas and religions, to the dynamics of historical events, to elements of our own personal lives.”
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Five poetry books by Shanta Acharya:
1. Dreams That Spell The Light (Arc Publications, UK; 2010):
2. Shringara (Shoestring Press, UK; 2006)
3. Looking In, Looking Out (Headland Publications, UK; 2005)
4. Numbering Our Days' Illusions (Rockingham Press, UK; 1995)
5. Not This, Not That (Rupa & Co, India; 1994).
Publication Date: 19 Feb 2015
Cover designed by Dr Sanjay Acharya
A World Elsewhere is an extraordinary evocation of Indian social life in the 1960s and 1970s. Set in the state of Orissa, the novel depicts the life of the Guru family, especially their daughter, Asha. Intelligent, curious and sensitive, Asha's happy childhood turns into a lonely and troubled adolescence as her future is mapped out by the social conventions of the day: she will be an educated wife, mother, and housekeeper, married to a man of her family's choosing.
Exploring notions of love and betrayal, innocence and experience, the choices people make and the role luck plays in life, A World Elsewhere is timeless.
Word Masala Award
A Lifetime Achievement of Excellence as a Poet
Patrons: Lord Parekh & Lord Dholakia
Hey Jeremy Paxman, Poetry is Not Hijacked
I am not an academic
Not some Martian professor
or a dry scholar
Hell, nothing but a macadam of poetry
In a wager with Ghalib:
She is Shanta,
Well brewed words, a Paymana,
Get sober, you rake, are you?
Paymana in Urdu roughly means a glass of wine or liquor
Imagine: New & Selected Poems brings together the finest work from Shanta Acharya’s five books of poetry with a generous selection of new verses. Her subtly layered poems, with deep roots in two cultures, explore and reflect on the human condition. They address consciousness and creativity, issues of self and of the ways in which identity is perceived, belonging and exile, love and betrayal, suffering and realization. Moving with ease from ancient Indian scriptures and history to sharply observed lyrics about nature, from the horror and injustice of war to the absurdity of life, Acharya’s work reveals the largesse of her vision. This selection is a sound introduction to an uncommon poet.