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Ronga Nodir Paror Pora Luitor Bukuloi

Ronga Nodir Paror Pora Luitor Bukuloi (From The Red River to the Heart of Luit)

– by Alpana Barooah, Houston, Texas

Congratulations to Alpana Bariooah for publishing a beautiful book of poems, a compilation of twenty-five poems in Assamese written at different times. The book is published in colorful art paper and the beauty of the pages is enhanced by a selection of beautiful sketches, paintings and photographs, creations of Barooah herself. The cover design is also by the Barooah. Besides a foreword by this author, the book is also graced by a foreword by the renowned Assamese poet Hirandra Nath Dutta.

lpana is successful in portraying the life of a busy and active Assamese-American real life artist of multifarious talents; she is a dancer, a singer, a poet, a painter, a photographer, a world traveler, a cook, a gardener, a single mom, a grandmother and many others. On the top of all these, she also teaches in an American high school. Alpana came from Assam where the river Brahmaputra which is also known as Luit, meaning ‘red’, is the lifeline. Today however, she lives in Texas on the bank of another river, the Red River. The title of the book, ‘Luitor Pora Ronga Nodir Bukuloi’ (From Red River to the Heart of Luit) in way conveys the theme of Barooah’s poetry. All her poems depict her deep nostalgia for her home, the land and life she left behind long ago on the bank of Luit.

oetry comes in various types and it has different levels. In her own words, her poetry may not have much depth in thought but reflects her own emotions emanating during her journey through life. A poet writes poetry for her own sake, and not for anybody else. In that sense, her poetry allows us to peep into her own inner life. In the poem titled, ‘Xongram’ (Struggle), one probably sees her own struggle in real life as a single mom in a foreign country. In the poem titled ‘Bixal Xagor’ (Vast Ocean), we are reminded of the famous novel by Earnest Hemingway, ‘The Old Man and the Sea’. She writes, “This is my journey; A vast ocean, and there I am; All by myself alone on a small boat….” It is not that her poetry reflects only the hard facts of life; her poetry also reflects the positive aspects of life, the joyous beauty of life in general. In others one feels the depth of life. In one poem she writes, “Have you ever been to a sea at night? When the night is deep and silent; when there is no reflections of the stars; when there is simply the depth of the waves of the sea, the sounds of water flowing by, and the vast emptiness of the earth?”

mong Assamese-Americans, Barooah is a pioneer in publishing her own book of poetry. Let me conclude with a remark made by the poet Hirendra Nath Dutta in his ‘Foreword’ to the book about Alapana. He wrote, “After reading the poetry of Alpana Barooah, I strongly feel that Barooah has the potential of being a successful song writer in future.” We hope Barooah will take note and we wish that she would continue her creative writing to bigger heights in future.
- Rajen Barua, Texas

A Review of Alpana Barooah’s “Ronganodir Paror Pora Luitor Bukuloi”

Alpana Barooah’s 60-page book of poems, Ronganodir Paror Pora Luitor Bukuloi, is a coffee-table style book, printed on glossy paper with attractive photographs and paintings on each page, complementing the copious beauty of her poems. The collection of poems is eclectic in nature. However, her poems are explicitly personal, each one dripping in her love of life, family and nature. The poems are not abstract; she deftly pens in simple lyrical Assamese words her womanly inner thoughts in various contexts in life, vulnerably exposing herself to her readers.

Some of Alpana Barooah’s poems are heart-rending, depicting personal and intimate losses; some are expressions of joy at her successes and achievements in this beautiful, but competitive world; and, some present child-like and wondrous expressions of confidence in her ability to face the vicissitudes of life with smile, courage and determination. In several of her poems, she is mesmerized by the bounty of beauty in nature whether it is in Assam, Arunachal her extended family. Zubin, clearly, reciprocates the sentiment and writes a moving testimony on the back cover of the book.

The book clearly shows that Alpana Barooah, in spite of more than 25 years of living in America, is still a woman from Golaghat, tightly tethered to her motherland of Assam.

The photographs, the sketches and the paintings on the pages of the book illustrate Alpana Barooah’s inner warmth and depth, as well as her appreciation of things beautiful in this world. There is a photograph of a flowering and vibrantly colorful rose bush in her backyard in Texas. There is a photograph of a massive tree geometrically branching out in Sonapur, Assam. There is even a photograph taken at the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, showing the serenity and immensity of the blue waters. There are many others to enjoy.

The book is definitely one you should buy for your personal library in America or elsewhere. Please contact the author at if you would like to obtain a copy for yourself.

- Jugal Kalita, Colorado