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(The Rain Falling)
The key poem of the volume ‘A Rain of Rites’ reminds readers about the tradition which binds Mahapatra with his past. In the title poem rain is the symbol of wisdom which works as an eye opener for every reader to apprehend reality. It also symbolizes primitive innocence of human being. Rain is an all diffusive metaphor in Jayanta Mahapatra’s poetry. Rain not only binds man with the universe as a suggestive symbol of fertility, but also evokes his past and reminds him of the suffering he had faced in life. The following lines suggest:
The rain I have known and traded all this life is thrown like kelp on the beach. (A Rain of Rites)
If rain intensifies the desire in man and woman for a sexual union, it also provides him or her hope for a better future. The imagist poet focuses on such a situation when rain warns him against the days wasted and face to face him with the reality. The rainfall bring to him a kind of self-realisation. The poet exclaims as following:
Rain stands on the margins of my time, a discovery, like theft, making me careful how I lay the hour down, looking at the trees growing too …show more content…
All night I have waited for the rain to end, the forbidden memories ringing, compelling footfalls among the ruins, the day’s last sun-smoking in unending fields soaked in innocence. (Four Rain Poems)
According to V.A. Shahane, ‘Rain’, for Mahapatra, is thus both a ritual and reality-ritual of purifying oneself as well as the reality of seasons, the cyclical change in the Indian year, in Orissa’s wet and fertile landscape- the naked earth covered by the waters of the Mahanadi and its tributaries which in fact, surround the town of Cuttack from the three sides making virtually an island (V.A. Shahane, P-147).
In Mahapatra’s poetry the symbol of rain got manifold directions. The image of rain is used by the poet to symbolize both creative and destructive. ‘A rain that does not wet the earth/ lost of purpose, like a benediction’, where day breaks fat and treacherous with rain’ shows the destructive forces of rain.
In Mahapatra’s poetry ‘rain’ as a regenerative symbols occurs frequently in numerous poems. The poet exclaims,
It has being raining