Editorial – YQR, May’22

Two Interviews – Kalpna Singh Chitnis, Tikuli Dogra

The May edition of Yugen Quest Review features two exclusive interviews with stellar, fascinating poets artists and film-maker of ‘The Tree‘, thus becoming a perfect sequel to the Spring-Summer Edition carrying our favorite leitmotifs – trees, poets, WE Green Heart Awardees 2022.  

This issue is also a perfect celebratory bridge to our forthcoming  anniversary edition, and will merge with it in June.

This special edition ponders on the soul of trees, art from tea-bags, making art in down-time, and brings in a rocket to the moon! Yes, you heard right! But then, we are talking about the work of extraordinary creative women! Fasten your seat-belts please.

Before we get on with the introductions, a little background as connective tissue…

The Spring-Summer 2022 edition of Yugen Quest Review had presented the salient points of our eventful journey as a literary community since 2016, and announced the Green Heart Awardees 2022; the two intricately linked by the pandemic and climate change!

The pandemic had played an unwitting role by bringing everything to a head – ‘life as usual’ had halted, time slowed down, breath became more precious, nature assumed centre stage erupting out of enclosures of memory, art, creations, reality.…some of my own art (‘Turning Into Trees’, video, Spring 2016, Earth-Woman, watercolour, 2002, Peepwood, oil, 2003, and more) tumbled out of the wood-work as we wrote  poetry during #CeWoPoWriMoWE ’20, ’21, ’22. 

It is serendipity that this issue features the work of artists-poets-filmmakers who share a deep bond with trees, earth and the natural world, and have navigated the pandemic with immense creativity.

Tikuli Dogra

In the pandemic scenario of nature-as-saviour and soothsayer, there were artists who soldiered on amidst the gloom and despondency, bringing up treasures of the natural world in photographs, artistic creations and beautiful social media posts. The one who inspired me the most and kept me going in difficult times is Tikuli Dogra, extraordinary artist, poet, author, photographer, culinary genius and a green heart friend, who constantly engages with new ways of seeing. She keeps the capital city and our timelines beautified with her art and energy, her creations – a roaring success. 

Very happy to feature an interview with her.

Kalpna Singh Chitnis

Delighted to bring you an interview with the exceptional, award-winning poet author, filmmaker, actor, artist, editor, friend, a stellar woman who wears many hats – Kalpna Singh Chitnis. Over the years, poetry has connected us online and face-to-face, given us beautiful memories, tided us over disagreements and celebrated in bursts of joy our shared love for trees, earth, the natural world and beauty. 

Kalpna’s recent film ‘The Tree‘ premiered at the Historical Fargo Theater on the eve of Earth Day and was awarded the 2022 Best Experimental Short Film Award at the North Dakota Environmental Rights Film Festival.

Her work the “River of Songs” poems and film, is going to the Moon on two separate lunar missions of NASA in 2022 and 2023. 

The curator of the Lunar Codex Dr. Samuel Peralta, wrote her a personal message saying – “He wants to take expansive and hopeful messages to the Moon added to the Lunar Codex Time Capsule, worthy of archiving for generations.” 

Carry on reading their fascinating stories in this issue.

The June issue of Yugen Quest Review will be our first anniversary issue featuring poets from our writing space #CeWoPoWriMoWE, interviews with WE Green Heart Awardees 2022, interesting news and will incorporate the May issue in grand celebration.

Happy reading!