An event titled, ‘Poetry for Peace” was organised jointly by World Poetry Festival and Kathak, a Bangladeshi Poetry Initiative, recently. It was held at Bishwo Shahitto Kendro. The general theme of the event was presenting a united stand against the recurring acts of violence across the globe. The event saw 35 Bangladeshi poets and two Mexican poets come together and perform their pieces.
The poets were encouraged to recite poems in Bangla, although there were a few who chose to recite in English. There were poets of many ages and backgrounds participating. Some were young men and women expressing their new-found passions, while others where seasoned and experienced reciters.
The English translation of Dr Yuri Zambrano’s Spanish poem was read journalist Jahirul Alam. Dr Zambrano is a writer, activist and coordinator of the World Poetry Festival. He is also a physician, researching in neuroscience and neurology.
Of the newer generation of poets, a young journalist named Nazmun Nahar Shishir, evoked feelings of empathy and pain among the audience as she spoke of the ruthless surroundings that women have to face in a city like Dhaka. Alongside social issues, other poets shed light on more common, yet equally affecting subjects of love, romanticism and nature.