One Soul Many Lives brings poetry and the visual arts in conversation with each other, evoking fresh readings of an age-old tradition, where text and image play off each other.
Poetry, often gets lost in the cacophony of the current social milieu in our visual and auditory oriented society. Giving poetry a voice and a visual makes it more approachable. Besides, introducing poems through a natural coupling with a visual or auditory mode of expression, lends it a certain vigour and richness.
Inspired by her unique life experiences, Laxmana’s poetry has an unpretentious and fresh quality that is both inspirational and pithy.
A father is like a demi-god for a daughter. Laxmana Dalmia was no different. The first poem she penned in this book springs from the disillusionment and pain that occurs when she finds out that her father is not the ‘idol’ she had created but is a mere mortal with ‘feet of clay’.
In a dream I saw one day,
My idol too had feet of clay—
At last I came to believe what I was told,
All men are fallible beneath the mold!.
In a serendipitous meeting of minds and intent, Laxmana Dalmia combined her efforts with Ashwini Pai Bahadur Director of Artspeaks India, to excavate and explore the umbilical kinship of poets and painters.
The resulting visual arts exhibition One Soul Many Lives is curated by independent critic-curator Georgina Maddox and Ashwini Pai Bahadur featuring the works of leading modern and contemporary artists. It envisages a coalescing of word and image forming narratives that complement or depart from each other. While some artists have created works especially for the poetry, others have sourced existing artwork that reflects upon the verse.
Laxmana Dalmia’s poems in One Soul Many Lives come straight from the heart where there is an entire range of emotions ranging from a burning desire, anger, revenge, despair and a fear of losing the beloved, to the understanding that everything in life is fleeting.
Understanding the principles and the values reflected in the book is like drawing a map of humanity’s time on earth. The first universal truth that seems to emerge from this book is that life with all its ups and downs has to be lived. The second is that we create our own reality and if we have the freedom to create then we can also de-create.
The poems offer simple solutions to universal life situations. In understanding the writer’s growth and evolution, the reader can get a picture of one’s own path. This can translate into self-awareness, freedom and the courage to forge one’s own unique way of life.
Laxmana Dalmia is a Poet, Writer, Producer, Director, Theta Healer and Certified NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) practitioner. She holds an MA in philosophy and maintains a deep interest in education, social welfare, women’s issues and spirituality. As a Producer-Director of TV serials and documentaries, she has produced over five hundred half hour films. Many of the over 100 scripts she has written—fiction as well as non-fiction have gone on to win critical awards and acclaim. Her passion for theatre has her committed as the Treasurer of the seven decades old “Indian People’s Theatre Organization” (IPTA).
Currently living in Delhi, she is an avid student of the spiritual sciences and practitioner of the Tarot Cards and healing of physical, mental and emotional states.
Her next book: Papa…How I wonder what you are…, slated to be released at the end of the year chronicles her emotional journey as the daughter of two well-known personas Ramkrishna Dalmia, one of corporate India’s most dramatic, dynamic and colourful men and Dineshnandini Dalmia, an extraordinary and extremely gifted writer.