This is our first issue after a long hiatus. We had begun the work for this issue with the observation that a tradition of “resistance poetry” is not so prevalent in the canon, as we have inherited it. It is interesting, then, that two of our contributors actually have turned to vernacular poetry traditions, and translations. There is a need to think through this particular problematics in and through critical reflections, didactic prose. Yet, that’s not what we are trying to do in this particular issue. Rather, our aim is to present in front of our readers a few contemporary poets, who re-define resistance in their own ways – through innovations in line-breaks, metaphors and images. We express our heartfelt gratitude and love to our friend and colleague Manjiri Indurkar, who has helped us in curating this issue.
Conceptualized by Nandini Dhar and Mihir Vatsa, editors of Aainanagar and Vayavya, FIVE is the final product of a creative collaboration started two years ago among five Indian poets and two illustrators. In the course of its completion, FIVE saw the poets assume simultaneously the roles of a friend, a mentor, an agony aunt, and an editor to each other while developing raw manuscripts into a neat set of chapbooks. From realities rooted in provincial culture and the diaspora to the speculative and the carnivalesque, each poet brings a distinct voice to the project.