Sonnet For Poet’s Sister/Jnanpith Award/Rumi’s Anniversary Events – Poetry News Roundup December 8th

Today’s poetry news round up looks at a special sonnet that has been penned for a poet’s sister, the winners of the 2020 and 21 Jnanpith Award and the events being planned for Rumi’s 748th death anniversary.

“Sonnet for Isola” Penned by Poet

When the poet Oscar Wilde was found dead in Paris in 1900, he was bankrupt and in exile in a foreign country.

Amongst the personal possessions that were found with Wilde were a few strands of his sister Isola’s hair, carefully stored inside an envelope. She died in 1867 when Wilde was just 12 and was buried in Edgeworthstown. It was the death of his sister that would go on to have a significant impact on the writing and career of the poet.

He penned the poem “Requiescat” in honour of Isola whilst he was at college. It is also widely believed that in “The Canteville Ghost” the young girl who he writes about transcending death is in fact based on her memory. Wilde often claimed that she “never died” in his mind. On the outside of the envelope that contained the lock of hair are the words “She is not dead but sleepeth.” This envelope together with the strand of hair have been in the possession of Merlin Holland, Wilde’s grandson for a number of years.

Dr Philip Brady, a poet and native of Edgeworthstown, has now authored a poem, “A Sonnet for Isola.” The story of Wilde and his sister is a part of the Historical and Literary Trail that is currently taking place in Edgeworthstown, and the sonnet has been written in honour of that history.

Jnanpith Award for 2020 and 2021 Recipients Announced

The Konkani writer Damodar Mauzo and Nilmani Phookan Jr the Assamese poet have been awarded the Jnanpith Award for 2021 and 2020, respectively.

Phookan is well regarded in literary circles for his notable works. He is a previous winner of a number of literary awards over the course of his lengthy career.

The Jnanpith Award is an annual award that is presented by Bharatiya Jnanpith. It is widely considered to be the highest award in Indian Literacy. It is given to someone who has made significant contributions to the field of literature.

Rumi Commemorations Gearing up to Begin in Turkey

Preparations have been completed in central Turkey to commemorate the 748th anniversary of the death of Jalaluddin al-Rumi, the mystic, philosopher, and poet from the 13th century whose works are still as influential today as when they were written.

The event is backed by the Tourism and Culture Ministry and will total 10 days of events to commemorate Rumi. The events will all take place in Konya, the city where Rumi is buried. It is expected that both locals and foreign visitors will take part.

The date of the passing of Rumi – 17th December 1273 is referred to as Seb-I Arus, the wedding night in reference to the reunion of Rumi with God.

As well as the Whirling Dervishes ritual dancing there will also be a number of workshops taking place, symposiums, and exhibitions. The Whirling Dervishes have been taking part in special rehearsals for a number of weeks now in order to be ready for the commemoration.

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