State Literary Award Winner; Shortlisted for the Gratiaen Prize
Enter a world of heat lighting and jazz, old radios and secret songs, the conversations that lovers have in the moments before dawn. Afdhel Aziz draws on the rich imagery of his home Sri Lanka to create poems of simple intimacy, capturing the lush beauty of the country, as well as its darker sides.
The confrontations of a man and his heart – Carl Muller
For anyone longing to return to a country in the imagination – The Sunday Times
Poems of simple intimacy that capture the lush beauty of Sri Lanka – The Daily Mirror
Twenty-four poems that transcend the tragedy of the tsunami that devastated the coast of Sri Lanka in 2004. With sensitivity and tenderness they address the questions that preoccupy the universal human condition.
Ms Cooray's work, both in the French in which she composed it and in translation (explanation) is arresting and thought provoking; a singular meditation on an equally singular moment in time. She has chosen to mix classical references most interestingly and even startlingly, with modern metaphors, her heavily alliterative style redolent of the whirling intensity of the tsunami to which the work is a response – Jill McDonald
Aparna Halpe's poetry captures the nuance of personal journeys through loss, dislocation and exile, foregrounding the collective history of a nation and a people fractured by the lived experience of racial, cultural and class based conflict Precarious traces the journey from the comforting confines of home, to the chilling, ironic spaces of an adopted city - Toronto. Fittingly, the poems broker an uneasy truce between real and imagined belonging, returning full circle to the point of genesis.
'Beautiful meditations on nature, myth, history, violence and longing. Aparna Halpé combines linguistic precision with poetic sensuality, to deliver a collection that will leave you 'looking for mermaids' while 'learning how to drown'.' - Shehan Karunatilaka
'What lingers after reading Aparna's poems is not just a memory of a dissected land or 'strangled ice' surrounded by words & music, but half light rain frozen between precariousness and unknown pain.' - Cheran
Gunawardena has a poetic voice that is always a quiet and thoughtful one
A recording of brief and witty, carefully crafted impressions of life as she lived it. Here is a collection of poems that reveal a country loved and known.
'The limpid simplicity of her language reveals nuanced complexities of response and judgement that actively engage the reader's mind and emotions when the writer presents the interplay of cultures or personalities, or of the past, recent past and the present. She depicts herself as an unobtrusive observer "I love to watch through glass". She is also so acute and honest that her poems can evoke disturbing echoes' – Lakshmi de Silva
'The pull of her Motherland is clearly seen, yet without cloying sentimentality or paeans of praise to its scenic beauty' – Anne Abeysekera