The making of ‘Over the Ruined Castle’

I had never enjoyed reading poetry..there were always too many hidden layers , but while making an effort to study my mentor’s writings..and some of  it came to me in the form of  poems(sigh!)…i believe I somewhere cracked the code. 

I read the poem ‘Moon Over the Ruined Castle’  (Koojoo no tsuki, 1901), composed by Rentaro Taki,  about 2 years ago.

Aizu-Tsurugajo

“Today, the midnight moon is over the ruined castle.
An unchanged light. For whom is it shining?
Whatever is left of the castle’s fence, only a vine clings upon.
And the only singing left to the pines is the mourning winds.”

These lines stayed with me for a long time. It would be a few months before I could interpret them visually…and in the way I wanted to. Sitting at my workbench after a gap of 10 years, this series would be challenging to conceive and execute.

The poem left me feeling sullen and sad . With heaviness in my heart… on the face of it…the ‘glories and successes’ of war: it really is the way of the world today… I read the poem again and again. Yet the very basis of  our moral fabric was woven with the lofty threads of peace…so I was told and so I was taught. Did a line ever divide the truth from the lie…was the Devil any different from the Buddha?

I had once determined to create value with my work.  I would make pieces that gave hope and spoke of strength. It was time to refresh that determination and maybe then the answers too would come.

I decided to change the ‘unchanging light’. Night would become starry night, the sun would shine through the clouds ’til it finally and gloriously emerged over the ruined castle; the glories and successes of the human spirit. There would be no war but a revolution.

solitary reflections
in a reflected light,
the distant stars
shed light-dim,
a crumbling downfall
or
a life lived gloriously?
disbelief in my heart-
its a cloudy day,
the sun emerges-
the glorious victor
ever victorious,
i burn.
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5 thoughts on “The making of ‘Over the Ruined Castle’

  1. I so love this, Pallavi! Love knowing the history of where my pendant came from. Hope you’re well… Big hugs!

  2. life like light always takes over darkness, just need to switch on:)
    enjoyed reading your very maiden blog
    keep writing!!
    best

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