The Vintage Poet – An Interview with young, talented poet & author Piyumi Bhagya

Hola Beautiful People!!!

An Unseen Melody

An Unseen Melody

Ensconced beside the lamp post

He sits in solitude, so quiet

An inextricable bond 

With his sole companion

Rested tenderly under his chin

Unruffled by the strident pavement

He gropes for the bow with trembling fingers

The strings tugging deep into his heart’s core

An euphonious melody unfelt by the passing crowd

His shrunken eyes forever lost in darknessvintage-violin-portrait-in-black-and-white-emily-enz

Enclosed only within his world of music

The mellifluous notes – so pure, so soft

As of a virtuoso violinist

He quivers now and then in the perishing darkness

When the yuletide breeze wraps around his skeletal body

But drawn on his withered face 

A smile so innocent – and all sweet

As if fallen into a nostalgic reverie

Of the past, the love, the music of his life

Now engraved in the fiddle and pegs of tears

Amidst the congested traffic din

And the muffled voices of the street horde

Receding into the eventide

Is a plaintive cry of a soul,

Scratched upon a forlorn tune  

When I first read this poem, I tried to imagine an old man seated on the side of the street, playing a violin. It was such an amazing poem, beautifully written with the perfect use of language. I felt that the poet carries true talent and I reached her via Instagram. We had a few chats and I felt that the world should know about the talents that she posses within her. I decided to do an interview with her, which she happily agreed. She is Piyumi Bhagya from Kuliyapitya, Sri Lanka. So, here we are and let’s dive in;

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Young and talented poet/ author – Piyumi Bhagya

Q : How would you describe yourself? And tell us about your family?

A : I’m Piyumi Bhagya Nawarathna and I’m 21, currently studying as an undergraduate at the University of Kelaniya. My hometown is Kuliyapitiya and at present I live with my parents as my brother recently migrated for studies. Well, if I talked about myself a bit, I consider myself to be a quiet, simple person. I’m not much of a socialized person and I spend most of the time living in an imaginary world of mine. Apart from writing and reading, I’m a passionate music lover and also a lover of nature. I do drawing and capture the beauty of nature when I’m bored and love the art of gastronomy as well. I guess I was born with art.

Q : How and When did you start writing? What Inspired you?

A : I guess writing has been coming down through all the generations of my family. I was inspired a lot by my maternal grandmother, who was an unpublished hidden writer, who had even translated the whole book of Jane Eyre into Sinhala. With every moment of her life, poetry unleased. Unfortunately she passed away nearly two years back and I still have those papers where she’d scribbled verses of poetry.

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Her work, as a little girl

Then I should thank my dear mother, for if it wasn’t for her inspiration, I’d never be here today. She is an amazing poet and a wonderful story teller herself. I remember my school days when she used to feed me while narrating a story. I’d never open my mouth unless she starts narrating a story. I remember the times she used to narrate all sorts of magical stories at night when I slept beside her. Somedays when she was too tired to finish the story, she would stop right at the climax and ask me to imagine what would happen next. So I spent the whole night dreaming of all sorts of endings and I hope that imagination and curiosity laid the first foundation of my creative writing.

Then I began to write down the stories my mother told me and later began to fabricate my own tales. I remember I compiled my first book of stories using A4 papers when I was in Grade 2 and then wrote several stories, drawing my own pictures. I was too small then and my grammar was not too good. I started to read and fell in love with all the books that my father bought. It all began with the Famous Five series and now I have my own mini library at home.

I started doing poetry as well, when I was in my secondary classes. I should also remind one special person of my life, Mrs. Mangalika Fernando, my English teacher since Grade 2 and my biggest inspiration. If she wasn’t there, I know I can never come up to this standard. She laid the foundation for my English knowledge. By Grade 4, I was capable of knowing all the English grammar tenses. She was the person who taught us to refer a dictionary since Grade 3. We had to carry that heavy dictionary to school almost everyday. She brought out my true self and praised me among every one else. She loved my creative essays the most and motivated me. I’ll never forget how she guided me as a light to this path.

Q : What does poetry mean to you?

A : Poetry for me is like unleashing out the emotions and feelings out of one’s soul. The things people cannot say directly comes in the form of poetry and enraptures the heart of the readers. The ecstasy I feel after composing one proper poem, cannot be turned into words. Poetry gives flight to your imagination and wings to your mind. It can carry you anywhere even above the clouds and make your heart lighter.  A lover of poetry becomes a lover of nature as well. Every moment, every movement is an inexpressible joy for a nature poet. It’s only a poet who sees the beauty of the things around you in an extra special way.

Q : Tell me about the Children’s Novel you wrote few years back?

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Piyumi’s first book – Blossom in Summer

A : My very first book ‘Blossom in Summer’ came out in 2015 as a children’s novel. It was the time I was so much in love with Enid Blyton’s books and I wanted to write my story in the Blyton style. Hence, the setting is an English background. The story revolves around the summer vacation of the five sisters – Berta, Belinda, the twins Bessy and Becky, and Briada the youngest. This marked a turning point in my writing career along with both the positive and negative remarks that I received, which inspired me immensely to develop myself further.

Q : What does it mean for you, to become a successful writer?

A : Being a well known writer, loved by everybody is my dream. Since my childhood days when somebody asked me what would I like to become, I would say ‘I want to be a writer’, without a second thought. I hope to improve my creative writing abilities further and reach my goal. I dream about the feeling of seeing my own books on shelves of bookstores one day. It’s not to be the best writer, but to be the most loved writer of all.

Q : What are your plans for the future? Do you have any idea of doing a poetry collection?

A : I’m working on a novel these days, completely different from my first novel, as I’ve detached from the English background and added Sri Lankan flavour to my story. I guess it will be a different one, one which will get familiar to your life and one that you will all love. I do hope of doing a poetry collection in future including about thirty poems. I’m working hard on them and once they are done, I’ll do a compilation of my poetry works. Further, I hope to write more stories for children in future, which will help them to delve into the magical beauty and buoyancy of childhood.

Q : How can we read and access your work?

A : It was recently I opened up my first and newest Facebook page ‘A Vintage Poet’ where all my creative works are uploaded, including poetry, free verses and inspirational quotes. I hope to start out a website as well and will soon inform once its done. You can find me on;
Facebook  & Instagram

Q : Before we wrap up the interview, anything that you have to say?

A : Special thanks goes to Hasanthi, of Hasanthi’s Book Blog –  one of the coolest, most motivating people I’ve met, for sparing her time in conducting my first blog interview. Also, to my beloved parents, for being my forever shadow, my inspiration and the foundation behind my success.

 

It was really a wonderful experience in having this little chat with the beautiful and talented, young author, Piyumi Bhagya. She is such a humble soul that has a big heart. I am very sure that she would definitely become a leading poet and an author in Sri Lanka. Wishing her all the success in all her future endeavors.

Do not forget to follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

That’s all for today folks. I hope you enjoyed this post. You are most welcome to leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.  Until the next post stay safe!!

XOXOX

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8 thoughts on “The Vintage Poet – An Interview with young, talented poet & author Piyumi Bhagya

      1. Nishantha

        Dear Piyumi
        I am very pleased about your talent and the way you have grown to this level with all silent attitudes.
        May you go Beyond the level you expect and be able to receive More and More comments about the good of your works.

        Liked by 1 person

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