"World renowned Himalayan poet”
“Yuyutsu Sharma is one of the finest poets on Planet earth.”
—Sean Thomas Dougherty, Erie, Pa
Yuyutsu Sharma is a uniquely gifted poet, critic, and translator. He travels the world teaching, reading, writing at a long list of universities. He is a United Nation of poetry with absolute integrity and honesty. The great poets W.H. Auden and William Carlos Williams would applaud him. If the Lord were in the audience or classroom, he would applaud too. If you read “The Offer” and ‘You are a New Yorker” you will see his range that includes England, France, 42nd Street, the Netherlands, and Spain, the homeless stops of the imagination. He walks through water and weeds in the rivers Ganges, the Tiber, the Yangtze, and Hudson. All these rivers are part of his bloodstream. (Somehow people manage to swim and drown in his bloodstream). He doesn’t forget the Amazon or the Mississippi or the everyday steam of the black tea pot. There is a faint sweetish smell of a temple in Nepal on everything he writes. There are wild exchanges of words and ideas that abide with him. When I say hello to him, I sing the hymn, Abide with Me.
I don’t know the word for genius in Nepali Yuyu is a gifted Himalayan Mountain climber. If the Buddha gave fellowships, he’d grant one, perhaps two immediately to Yuyutsu Ram Dass Sharma.
—Stanley Moss, American poet and editor, Sheep Meadow Press
The ‘blinding snows of the Annapurnas ridge’ inspire a poetry that confronts natural magnificence with exuberant humanity. Yuyutsu R D Sharma’s generous vision embraces not only the landscape and its people but the lesser fauna, like the pigeons that speak ‘a kind of hushed speech that robbers might use’ and the mules on the Tibetan salt route, exhausted and bow-legged from hauling ‘cartons of Iceberg, mineral water bottles,/ solar heaters, Chinese tiles, tin cans…’ These vividly colored, muscular and energetic poems have an atmosphere of freshness, as though the snow itself had rinsed and brightened them. Like the ‘waterfall beds that/ smelled of the birth of fresh fish’, they have the tangy, dust-free odor of language born of lived experience.”
—Carol Rumens, British Poet & Writer of The Guardian’s Weekly Column, “Poem of the Week”
There’s a brilliance in the mind of the poet whose imagination created this gem of a poem out of the “crumpled calendar of chaos,” aptly called the “Lost Horoscope.” I was hypnotically immersed in the structure of steps that each stanza offered, hurling the reader down into memory, into the “wingless realm of illogical proclamations” and the resultant “wasteful heap of despair,” while seeking “solace, sleep, and salvation” to arrive at the epiphany that “perhaps all those prophesies were true.” Like an Eliot poem, to gain the enlightenment inherent in this poem, you must read the poem again to capture the nuance and metaphysics of the allusions connecting each image, each stanza, to recover the revelatory “medley of omens” leading to the abyss of “imminent doom.” One must journey, “sight fractured,” through the “moldy world of rickety realities” --typhoid, covid-- while “humming the prayers, drenched in the Monsoon showers of the Himalayan valleys rolling in the world of spirits and sages.” Like the poet, one must risk the life of his creative will to recover and rediscover what healing eternal truths lay, lost and buried in our collective unconscious decades and centuries ago... a magnificent sight- healing journey.”
- James Ragan, The Emerson Poetry Prize, NEA Fellowship, the Swan Foundation Humanitarian
“Like “globes of light” along a narrow path through “blind night,” these syncopating couplets offer neither escape nor absolution, but something more tangible for “bleary-eyed wanderers”:
Company along the way.
—Charles Bernstein, author of Near/Miss and Pitch of Poetry & the winner of the 2019
Bollingen Prize for American Poetry
Yuyutsu Sharma’s new collection is concerned with notions of home and being away in the exotic elsewhere. Home strikes deep, like ‘my grandma / asleep // on a plump / bubble // of a folk song’ but is then flung into the great proper nouns of New York, all detail, all observation and dazzle. The poems are registered at the tips of the eyes then connected with the sense of deep home. That is where the power lies. It emerges through ear and mouth as a kind of cosmopolitan love letter.’
—George Szirtes, British Poet, winner of Faber Memorial Prize & T.S. Eliot Prize
I feel unable to praise Yuyutsu Sharma’s new collection adequately. I think of Whitman, Neruda, Lorca. Sharma is a fever and river, at moments a rhapsody and the gods sing through him even his workshop is messy. Yuyutsu Sharma should be known as The Himalayan Neruda not only for the torrents of images and compassion and outrage in his poetry but for the range of his subjects, themes and imagery. Reading him I feel as I do when reading Neruda that he could make first rate poetry out of anything, as he ranges like a vartic voice of the Himalayas through the natural beauties of Nepal and cities of the world.
—Mike Graves, American poet and teacher, City University of New York, author, A Prayer for the Less Violent Offenders“
If Langston Hughes, Federico García Lorca and Frank O’Hara were exhumed to rub their recollections of New York City together over dal and black tea, they might produce a manuscript as rapturous as Yuyutsu Sharma’s love letter to the five boroughs. Infused with the mythology of Sufi saints and Hindu deities, Blizzard Go Delhi is nonetheless utterly contemporary, juxtaposing Duane Reedes and Occupy Wall Streeters alongside Punjabi wheat fields and muscular Halwai-confectioners working over huge cauldrons of oil. Unrepentant in its sensuality, self-assured and visionary, Sharma’s book is an extravagant tour de force that shows us that stepping off the train into New York City is to enter a realm “of wandering winter spirits and wavering speeches...a bedlam vision of a bedroom utopia that tries very hard every night to find a partner of sleep.” Tries, but thankfully for us, fails and instead stays up to channel the manic, long-limbed energy of the city in this memorable and original verbal jazz solo. This book is a poetic triumph.
—Ravi Shankar, Executive Director of Drunken Boat, author of seven books of poetry & co- editor of W.W. Norton & Co.’s Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from Asia, the Middle East & Beyond
A Blizzard in My Bones, Yuyu’s deeply moving new collection and a remarkable addition to modern urban literature. It is Nepal and Hinduism and Brooklyn and Manhattan and Greenwich Village drawn together in a new Space Cake: Amsterdam; but here the hallucinogen-stoked celebration is amid the concrete and steel heights of Metropolis.
—David Austell, Professor, Columbia University, author of The Tin Man
Nine New York Poems , subtitled A Blizzard in My Bones, deepens the tourist’s experiences of New York into a spiritual encounter. The collection begins with the ecstasy of disorientation but quickly locates the self in the unknown. Written by a Nepalese poet and trained ascetic, this precise collection of poems combines the pain of homelessness with the joy of travelling.
—World Literature Today, University Of Oklahoma
A Blizzard In My Bones is worth the wait. The marriage of eastern angst and western jitters is beautifully realized, both in dreamscapes and in naturalistic description. The sexual suggestiveness is very powerful, as is the evocation of NY place time in all its gritty glory.
—Robert Scotto, Author, Imagined Secrets, Professor, Baruch College, CUNY
“Yuyutsu RD Sharma brings the bracing airs of the Himalayas to any city. His vigorous, expansive and elemental poems leave Yeti tracks on the streets and mule trails on the Tube. They are packed with rapturous couplings of the urban and the feral.”
—Pascale Petit, author, Mama Amazonia, Former Poetry Editor, Poetry London
“Formed by 20th century South Asian and North American poetry movements and himself a verbal renewer of his country’s literature, he indefatigably writes along rivers and paths, mountains, valleys and villages, verse after verse, one image after the other, an encounter at a time.
—Dr. Christoph Emmrich, Professor of South and Southeast Asian Buddhism, University of Toronto.
Each poem is a delight in itself, a discovery, a new turn of phrase, a new sensation, a world of sound and light, and visions all colliding against each other to provide an unexpected and haunting experience.
—David Clark in Exiled Ink, London
Yuyutsu RD lives close to Everest. His poetry climbs mountains, swims in rivers and paints the falling leaves in copper. This tango with nature also occurs when Yuyutsu RD closes the
window for a moment…
—Ronny Someck in Iton77, Tel Aviv
The poems… are shining jewels of passion, energy and splendid craft, redolent with vivid, dreamlike visual imagery, strengthened by realistic observation and powered by strong male eroticism. His is an unabashed return to the male gaze that is refreshing and solemn by turns, reminding one of the stirring sounds of rolling drums and beating rain…
—Sucheta Das Gupta in The Himalayan Times,
A fiercely sublime poet …the book confirms an enormous talent, as well as purity of purpose with which he approaches his calling. Lines jump out, burning themselves into your consciousness.
Something is always happening in Yuyutsu’s poetry. Like some burning concern for truth, something that, I think, a poem should do. For this, we owe Yuyutsu much.
— Jayanta Mahapatra, Cuttack, India
With this buoyantly audacious work, Yuyutsu RD should be assured of his place in the canon of Asian poetry. In this new volume he conveys the people and places, the flora and fauna of the Annapurna area of Nepal with an exhilaratingly fresh vision. It is poetry where pastoral elegy becomes fused with magic realism; where earthy common-sense mysticism becomes interlaced with a
lush sexuality. The book is a voluptuous and loving evocation of Nepal and I admire its dramatic intensity.
— Cathal O Searcaigh, Irish Poet
“Yuyutsu’s poetry touches on concerns of global matters, acknowledging that we can never with violence create a Utopia or “construct a gorgeous pagoda from/furious flames/and whistling winds … Such lines capture for me the futility of the Iraq War, which I refuse to dignify with its official title, even more euphemistic and tainted with doublethink than earlier misadventures. We can’t build even a humble pagoda from furious flames and whistling winds.
— David Ray, Recipient of William Carlos Williams & Indo-US Fellow
“Yuyutsu R.D. brings to the Indian readers a distinct flavor of the Nepalese landscape and culture, in a sequence of poems that pulsate with needle-sharp images—Equally sensitive is
his language that, scrupulously avoids stilted diction-words or phrases. His writing is so densely imagistic that he holds reader’s attention all the way through. Behind plethora of packed images is a genuine concern for the human predicament—the trials and tribulations of the destitute everywhere. Hunger is the theme that runs as an undercurrent-hunger that gnaws into the vitals of both humans and animals.”
—Shiv K. Kumar in The Hindustan Times
Yuyutsu has a good eye and a good ear:
The rain stopped in the jungle.
The cicada stopped its chirr.
To have an ear for a sudden silence in unique.
—Keki Daruwala in The Hindustan Times
“Yuyutsu’s poetry has long been a part of the Nepalese consciousness: we use his more aphoristic lines as a paradigm of contemporary Nepali political and social changes.”
— Sarad Pradhan, The Kathmandu Post
This is what Asiaweek has to say of Yuyutsu’s translations of Nepali poetry:
‘… magnificent achievement evoking lives of Nepalese peasants while remaining highly readable… The reader will come away breathless from these short, wonderfully concentrated poems’ These vivid and readable translations show the poets coming to terms both with political development and with the influence of Western modernism in literature.
— Allen W. Thrasher, Library of Congress, Washington DC
Ten: The New Indian Poets is an anthology featuring ten talented and diverse Indian poets: five men and five women writing in English about life in India. Each author’s unique writing style paints a different picture of India. The poems range from heartbreaking to hopeful and showcase some of the very best contemporary poets India has to offer.”
—World Literature Today, University of Oklahoma