#ChaiLines- Brewing Poems with Chandini Hemdev- RJ Shilok


13029445_10154151601203910_5211067355007865176_oChandini, a well-known spoken word poet, is interviewed by RJ Shilok in this show. Known for her uniquely profound metaphoric references, she talks to RJ Shilok about her experiences with poetry. She is a wedding planner as well as a published poet with an MA in Literature. Her first book which is a collection of 27 poems is titled, “Something Written, Yet Unwritten”. The title largely summarizes her life and her feelings which intrigue her with their uncertainty.

“My epiphany with poetry was in 12th standard”, she says. Her teacher published her work in the school magazine and that was when she realised that her poems were good enough to be read. She then began to write about things that she could not share with her parents or her friends.

Some of the events in her life, like her aunt’s death with cancer and her breakup had a major impact on the themes of her poems. However, she says that cynicism isn’t the only theme of her poems. She also writes about lighter and happier things. She reads her poems, ‘When the Present becomes a Memory’ and ‘A Secret Wish’.  To lighten the mood, she reads her poem, ‘Hakuna Matata’ which is yet another piece of beauty.

She says how publishing the book changed her life. She began to be identified with her poems and it made a significant difference in her social space. It made people trust her more. Poetry, she says, has made her see the world in her own narrative. It has helped her grow beyond social limitations and has made her more empathetic.15203405_10211322381564086_2311232181458618415_n

With the belief that a poet is someone who can make a difference in another person’s life, she says that poetry is the path towards change. “Poetry is my soul smiling to myself”, she expresses.

Being engaged with poetry as well as report-writing, she speaks about the shift in approach needed for each style. She mentions about her personal experiences in journalistic writing and the challenges she faced to manoeuvre her mindset accordingly.

“If you made an impact, then people know they miss you”, she says. To perfectly end the talk show, she reads her poem, ‘Life like a Candle’ and inspires RJ Shilok with a metaphoric view of her deepest beliefs.

– Vybhavi Adiga

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