Tishani Doshi is an award-winning poet, writer and dancer of Welsh-Gujarati descent. This was her first new book of poems since Countries of the Body, winner of the Forward Prize for Best First Collection in 2006, and was followed by her third collection, Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods, in 2018.
In this, her first poetry collection since the award-winning Countries of the Body, Tishani Doshi returns to the body as a central theme, but extends beyond the corporeal to challenge the more metaphysical borders of space and time. These new poems are powerful meditations born on the joineries of life and death, union and separation, memory and dream, where lovers speak to each other across the centuries, and daughters wander into their mothers' childhoods. As much about loss as they are about reclamation, Doshi's poems guide us through an `underworld of longing and deliverance', making the exhilarating claim that through the act of vanishing, we may be shaped into existence again. Everything Begins Elsewhere was followed by her third collection, Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods, in 2018.
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'These poems move in different directions, as true poetry should. We hear in them joy and sadness, praise and lament, love and disenchantment - simultaneously. Tishani Doshi speaks courageously about herself, about her choices, about the growing shadows. It's a beautiful book' - Adam Zagajewski. 'There is a fierce power to Tishani Doshi's poetry. Delicate as spun silk, it draws us into the zone of desire, even as it opens us to what lies beyond - the quick of the metaphysical. Places slip and slide and melt into each other - lover, mother, father, brother appear and disappear, time perfects itself as eternal vanishing' - Meena Alexander. 'Doshi's poems embody a world of longing - her laments and dreams sear the reader's senses, setting their world alight. She makes you want to dance to the strings of her taut and tender soundboard, and echo aloud her fathomless world. Here is a poet with lyrical acuity in abundance' - Menna Elfyn. 'A striking, emergent talent who is prepared to take risks in pursuit of sensual, emotionally engaged and passionate poetry' - John Burnside, Forward Prize judge's comment. 'A quest for the truths contained within that "failed infinity / Of body, fibre, blood". She works under her expressive title to offer an eloquent dissection of the body - its attributes, metaphors, deficiencies and contradictions - all delivered in chromatic, richly textured lines, in which the assured manipulation of rhythm and internal rhyme produces poems of remarkable balance and grace' - Sarah Crown, Guardian. 'Free of the habitual lyricism of Indian writers, her work is austere and beautiful. Her refreshing muscularity gives her a distinct voice, both as a woman and an Indian, focusing on the female body, which she treats as a venue for male pleasure and a factory for patriarchy, producing desired sons and unwanted daughters' - Nirpal Dhaliwal, The Times Online
About Tishani Doshi
Tishani Doshi is an award-winning poet and dancer of Welsh-Gujarati descent. She was born in Madras, India, in 1975. She received her masters in writing from the Johns Hopkins University in America and worked in London in advertising before returning to India in 2001 to work with the choreographer Chandralekha, with whom she performed on many international stages. An avid traveller, she has been trekking in the Ethiopian Bale Mountains, visited Antarctica with a group of high-school students, and documented the largest transvestite gathering in Koovakam. She has written about her travels in newspapers such as the Guardian, International Herald Tribune, The Hindu and the Financial Times. She won an Eric Gregory Award for her poetry in 2001. In 2006, she won the All-India Poetry Competition, and her debut collection, Countries of the Body (Aark Arts), won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection. Her first novel, The Pleasure Seekers (Bloomsbury, 2010), was longlisted for the Orange Prize and shortlisted for the Hindu Fiction Award, and has been translated into several languages. Her second poetry collection, Everything Begins Elsewhere, was published by Bloodaxe Books in 2012. Fountainville: new stories from the Mabinogion was published by Seren in 2013. Her third collection, Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods (Bloodaxe Books, 2018), is a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and was shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry 2018. Her second novel, Small Days and Nights, was published by Bloomsbury in 2019. Tishani Doshi currently lives on a beach between two fishing villages in Tamil Nadu with her husband and three dogs, and sometimes moonlights as a dancer.
Everything Begins Elsewhere by Tishani Doshi
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