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A poem was sent by Arjava to Sri Aurobindo on 7 April 1934

by on April 12, 2012

The opening and closing lines of the stanza are very fine and the second and third are good though not as good as these. The second stanza on the contrary seems to me very successful, especially the two lines of which you speak, and I don’t think anything can be said against them. I would not alter line 11—the word “avenues” is the right one and to exile it would deprive the line of its power.

Arjava:

The first stanza of the enclosed was written some three weeks ago—I put it aside not knowing how it could be finished. 

Will not a sensitive reader detect the ‘second-handness’ of the substance, the lack of direct and actual experience,—for which the Victor Hugo-like magniloquence is a poor substitute? 

Lines 10-11 are better than the rest, are they not? 

Could the excess of “v” sound be diminished by putting in line 11 “lonely valleys of the void”?

Sri Aurobindo:

Your criticism applies to the fourth and the seventh lines of the first stanza—they fail to get the right inspired expression. But the opening and closing lines of the stanza are very fine and the second and third are good though not as good as these. The second stanza on the contrary seems to me very successful, especially the two lines of which you speak, and I don’t think anything can be said against them. I would not alter line 11—the word “avenues” is the right one and to exile [uncertain reading] it would deprive the line of its power.

[The poem is not available]

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