Poetry, it is admitted by every body, is one of the fine arts.
Tolstoy takes the definition of art as the external manifestation, by means of lines, colours, movements, sound or words, of emotions felt by man‟ given by Veron and adds that it must be effective as well. This is comprehensive enough to include every one of the fine arts of which dance, music and poetry are of one category, in that they may not have a permanent form. Poetry was originally sung and heard but not written and read. Man, as that great philosopher Aristotle says, is a social animal and the most essential requisite for a social life is the communication of feelings and ideas to one another. That could be done in three ways, when writing was not yet known, namely, by bodily signs including facial expressions, by various cries with tonic modulations and by the use of words. There is an increase in range though a decrease in depth, from the former to the latter, in their capacity as modes of expression. That is to say the facial expression, as a frown, or the bodily movement, as a shrug, can be useful only when the parties are very near, and even then, they are expressive of only a limited number of primary and simple emotions. On the other band, the cries would be effective to even a distance and can reveal a wider range of emotions. Words, of course, with their conventional meanings, have the widest range. Thus each latter is more extensive in its operation than the former. But at the same time it may be noted that what is gained in extension is lost in intension. The facial expression is a better index, than
But in the case of music. and man is the inventor of the last one. In other words. in many cases. means for the communication of knowledge. which consists primarily of ideas. when the transmission of a feeling is done through a word. among other things. Art is. Of these three means of expression of emotion. which is expressed through a sound symbol. which is decoded again at the other end. without much of an intellectual intervention of the voluntary (human)
. That is where it differs from the ordinary business. but it is intended to be sympathetically lived. the effective transmission of emotions and feelings. It is a long process and the feeling would lose much of its freshness and intensity by the time it reaches the other end. That is why. which is the province of science.the cry. In Art. as distinct from feelings and emotions. as we have seen. of an emotion. there is first the transformation of the „feeling‟ into „idea‟. The advantage of the word is that it is. as in poetry. because possibly it is more universal. the word is the least universal as it is dependent upon the knowledge of the particular language or the conventional system. if not the only. the best. if one may use that word. Now then. the first two were already in use even in the animal life. Again it is not mere intimation but infection. Of the three. it is proving unable to recall the experience in the hearer. the emotion is not intended to be intellectually perceived. the emotion flows out. it is emotional and not intellectual. it is concerned with the heart and not so much with the head. as opposed to the communication of ideas.
who announced. Ekam apatamadhuram Anyad alochanamrutam. „Sangitam‟ etymologically means well-sung. the three organs relating to a drama. Before a discussion of poetry is taken up. and acts directly upon the heart. The lexicographer Amarasimha says “Tauryatrikam nrutta giro vadyam Natyamidam Trayam” that is to say that Tauryatrika is the triune of dance. music is more effective and quick in action in kindling emotions than poetry. music speaks in the language of the beast.’ For one. and poetry in the language of the head. I like to say one or two things about music. But this interpretation appears to be a
. Sangitam atha Sahityam Sarasvatyah stanadvayam. and for the other. That is to say.agency. and this absolute truth is clearly noticed by the ancient seers. without the necessity of passing through the medium of the hearer‟s head. the seat of emotions. So it is that. song
and orchestra. It is said to be a synonym of Tauryatrika which literally means the triune with the Turiya. as the message is not sent in code. It is given the status of a Veda as Gandharva and it is called „Sangitam‟ by the Oriental scholars. Pada or word. as an art. the medium is Nada or sound.
It is called Nritya as distinct from Natya which is a dramatic performance. Therefore. Murajadhvani and the Gitam.development long after the advent of Bharata. but also poetry. Here there is no reference to dance. Tana (Sruti) and Tala (Laya) aspects respectively. when he comments ‘Pasupateh nithyam Sannihitasya Sivasya– Nrutyata iti seshah’. that he might have fallen into the popular error that was current from the days of Amarashnha. and Dance Nrutyam. This can be gathered from Kalidasa‟s Meghasamdesam 1. the three things mentioned being Kichakadhvani. Dance is a quite distinct art from music and poetry and was developed from the physical expression as the other two were developed from tonal and verbal expressions. The original meaning of the term Sangita appears to be the triune of vocal song with the accompaniment of Tambour and drum representing the Raga. who established the dramatic art–Natya–which comprehended not only Music Sangitam.60 which runs thus: Sabdayante madhuram anilaih kichakah puryamanah Samsaktabhi stripuravijaye giyate kinnaribhih Nirhrada ste muraja iva chef kandareshu dhvani ssyat Sangitardho nanu Pasupateh tatra bhavi samagrah.
. I venture to say. with all respect for the wide learning of the great Mallinatha.
turned into art to adorn the life. so as to yield the maximum effect. but Mill appears to differ from him when he says „What is poetry. that it was found to be more effective to unite them into one comprehensive Art of Dramaturgy. says Wordsworth. what is poetry? It is an art in words or a literary art. and poetry Sahityam. So also here a mistake has crept into the terminology or rather into the explanation of the term. and the latest of them is poetry. music Sangitam. so as to recall the same emotions in the recipient and not merely to give an intimation of them. Natyam. obviously erroneously. Now. But in course of time dance itself was begun to be called. as when a performance in „Bharata Natyam‟ is announced. (See the commentary of Kumaraswami also). „It takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility‟. It was only after the development of the three modes of expression into the three different arts of dancingNrutyam.‘Chaturvidhai rabhinayaih satvikangikapurvakaih Dhirodattadyavasthanukrutir natyam rasasrayam Bhavasrayamtu nrutyam syat nruttam talalayanvitam’ says Prataparudra Yasobhushanam. as Natya. Art is skill and the different means of transmission of emotions which arise out of social necessity were skillfully handled by capable persons. but the
The general notion of the English critic is that poetry has always the form of verse or the aid of meter and is something other than prose. without which it were not poetry. in juxtaposition to each other. at the time of writing.‟ Here. is gradually produced. because Wordsworth has not completed his sentence but continues. in the words of Mill. But. the tranquility gradually disappears.thoughts and words in which emotion spontaneously embodies itself‟. „the emotion is contemplated till. kindred to that which was before the subject of contemplation. by a species of reaction.‟ A poet is thus one who is inspired and poetry is nothing but the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings. and does itself actually exist in the mind. Thus it is that Shelley proclaims that „the language of poets has ever affected a certain uniform and harmonious recurrence of sound. But the popular use of the terms prose and poetry.‟ Thus even according to Wordsworth.‟ as Wordsworth puts it. But the difference is only apparent. the poet. there is an implied acceptance of prose as also poetry. and an emotion. has to lose his tranquillity and has to work himself up to the original emotion and has to be. it may be noted that the viewpoint of the Sanskrit critic is quite different. points our the general trend of equating poetry with verse. „possessed by the feeling. for he says that prose is the touchstone of poetry (Gadyam Kavinam Nikasham Vadant–Vamana). However.
. in words. in what Leigh Hunt says.‟ Leigh Hunt also says that „Verse is the final proof to the poet that his mastery over the art is complete.
„without passing through the judgment. though
. The words may come in measured feet or not. as has been already stated. flows of itself from such clear intense sight. But one thing can be asserted. and all its end at once gained‟-pope. because what he actually means is something different. gain the heart.‟ Wordsworth. or to be „contemplated‟.when Carlyle says. so to say. speaks of „contemplation‟. has got to be „possessed‟ by it and to live the experience and be filled with it. and Carlyle speaks of „seeing‟. which can really thrill us. that „Whatsoever is not sung is properly no poem‟. would dance. that does not matter. either to be „seen‟. The stimulus may be objective or subjective. and as such. that will describe the thing. They are thinking of two distinct sources of inspiration for the poet. that it takes some form of rhythmical flow. but one thing is sure. that the more probable it is. but seeing the thing sufficiently! The word. that the words would play in measured feet. as is evident from the rest of the sentence which runs „but a piece of prose cramped into jingling lines. before we can expect any overflow from him.‟ He means merely that poetry is spontaneous and he puts the same in clearer terms when he says „Poetic creation. he should not be taken to be echoing the popular error. There lies the nucleus of truth around which grew the popular fallacy. For. music has the advantage of directly affecting the heart. the words set to tune would naturally. namely that the poet has got to react and give himself up to the emotion. what is this too. Thus. as has been noticed already.
Poetry. and not poetry. and the words. the importance of the „word‟ should not be subordinated. it only means that it should be very intensive and not that the poet should absolutely lose his control. Therefore in poetry there is always an element of will. Even when it is said that the emotion must overflow. The Sanskrit Alankarikas included both prose and verse in the term poetry when they defined it either as „ Sahrudaya h. Nevertheless true poetry must embody itself „in symbols which are the nearest possible representations of the feeling‟ as Mill has it. which are mere symbols as their meanings are but conventional. prose and mixed types. is essentially an art in words. lest it may cease to be poetry and become music. But the greater the control. emotional sounds and not meaningful words. If the emotion takes the upper hand– becomes uncontrolled–the expression would necessarily be music. This is done by „suggestion‟ or hinting at the associated ideas something akin to the process of a conditioned reflex.the meter or the musical element has its own part in the poetic art. This is what is called Vyangya by the Sanskrit Alankarikas and it came to reign supreme
. that the form it takes is prose.udayahladakari sabdarthamayatvameva kavyalakshanam’ as ‘Rasatmakam vakyam kavyam’ as ‘Ramaniyarthapratipadakah sabdah kavyam’ and when they finally categorised it into verse. are to be so used as to lead on to the feeling proper over and beyond the convention. the more it is likely.
But as a matter of fact it does not appear to be the correct explanation. vastvalankara dhvaneetu sarvadha rasam prati paryavasyete iti vachya dutkrustau tavityabhiprayena dhwanih kavyasyatmeti samanyenoktam. which point was taken up and developed in his theory of literary art by Viswanadha. But still Anandavardhana could not boldly state so. But Ananda was concerned with Sargabandha more and the authors there of were not always dealing with emotion alone as he himself puts it ‘Sargabandhestu rasatatparye yadharasam
. who was mainly concerned with the dramatic art. He asserts in many places. in the following words: ‘Tena rasa eva vastuta alma. could say that the emotion is the soul of art (drama).in the field of literary criticism from the day it was established by Anandavardhana. that of these three. Alamkara and Rasabhavadi. It is true that for a drama. His commentator. According to Anandavardhana Dhwani or Vyangya or suggestion is the Sahrudaya hrudayahladakari kavyatatvam and it is of three types Vastu. As poetry is the effective expression of emotion in words. it is but meet to think that the suggestion of sentiment is alone poetry. Abhinavagupta. sentiment or emotion alone was held to be the essence and so Bharata. that is to say. incident. that suggestion in general is the soul of poetry. ornament (figure of speech) and sentiment (emotion and feeling). the last variety is the best. tries to find a reason for the statement of Ananda.
„Logically. consist of a single word. The emotion is of two types: primary and secondary. dvayorapi margayoh sargabandha vidhayinam darsanat. Martin Gilkes says. of suggestion being the central principle. the later Sanskrit critics were unanimous on this point. namely. the ideal poem would.‟ Of course it should be that the subject is expressed and the associations suggested. and at another he says. Anyway. He wanted to include the Vastu Kavya as well as Bhava Kavya in his definition of poetry. that the old idea of representation has given place to the new theory of communication in poetry and accordingly. in his book entitled „A Key to Modern English Poetry‟. That is the technique of evocation‟ says the same critic at one place. „We all know how one thing suggests another. the old method of direct presentation has been replaced by the new technique of indirect suggestion.auchityam anythatu kamacharah. these are two distinct functions of the word as is clearly noticed by the Sanskrit critic. is accepted by the Western critics. that emotion is the essence of poetry. therefore. as to the content of poetry. Now. though he was neither logical nor rational in that.’ There we find the real reason for his definition in a general and wider strain. it may be noted that this idea. supposing you could find one. or permanent and
. which would fulfill the necessary condition of suggesting both the subject of the poem and the whole range of associations which the mind connects with it. we may observe.
and the production of that relish is the typical feature of poetry. namely the poets of nature and the poets of culture. „Each member of the audience will bring his own conscious or sub-conscious memories to help.’ The emotion is only suggestible and not expressible. What then are the essentials of a true poet? It is again Mill. is relishability.’ The Rasa as thus enjoyed. in the words of T. Williams. In this. a similar emotion which would give relish. This
. it conjures up in a sympathetic hearer. Thus it can be said that any poetic piece has got to have not only a unity of plot or incident but also a unity of emotion or sentiment as Anandavardhana puts it ‘Karyamekam yatha vyapi prabandhasya vidhiyate tatha rasasyapi vidhe virodho naiva vidyate. Mill also endorses this view when he says that the poetry of poets „is little else than a pouring forth of the thoughts and images that pass across the mind while some permanent state of feeling is occupying it‟. The permanent emotion is given the technical name of Sthayi Bhava and the transient emotions are called Sanchari Bhavas. G.transcendent.‟ This is exactly what Kalidasa has suggested in the lines ‘Tat chetasa smarati nunam abodhapurvam bhavasthirani jananan tara sauhrudani. The ideal of a poet is to represent or communicate the Sthayi Bhava by depicting the appropriate associate transient emotions. that divides poets into two classes. and says that the former are superior to the latter. Having been suggested. is relish and as represented.
If he were to lack the former. Anandavardhana also expresses a similar opinion when treating of Sakti or Pratibha and Vyutpatti. that the understanding of the reader must necessarily be in some degree enlightened. Some have said that poetry is to delight and to teach. and his affections strengthened and
. makes only a second rate poet. reaching to the depths of feeling. Even Dandi hints at this when he writes ‘Na vidyate yadyapi purvavasanagunanubandhi prathibhanam adbhutam srutena yatnena cha vagupasita dhruvam karotyeva kamapyanugraham. Bhatta Tonta is said to have stated that ‘Darsanat varnana chchatha rudha loke kavi srutih’ and it means that a poet must have the insight. Wordsworth who affirms that the purpose of poetry is „to describe objects. It is. coming to the end of poetry. Then. it would be devoid of the look of poetry. of course. and if he lacks the latter. in any way. The one is a gift and the other is an acquisition. his work would be wanting in the spirit of poesy. The general view of the Western critic is that it is nothing but the production of joy or delight. leading to the heights of emotion and the expression. of such a nature.‟ and utter sentiments. So a perfect poet is one who has in him both these qualities developed to the full. and in such connection with each other. finally.corresponds to the discussion of the same topic by Jagannadhapandita.’ Note the significance of cha which makes study and practice together one course and Eva and Kamapi which indicate that it.
i. in the words of Bhamaha. and the art of poetry is no exception to the rule. proclaims the purposes of poetry as ‘Chaturvargabhidhanepi bhuyasarthopadesakrit.. to instruct.‟ It is not to delight and to teach but to teach through delight.purified.’ The aim of every activity according to oriental thought is to elevate humanity. The special feature of it lies only in the method it adopts which is described by Mammata in the words „kantasammitataya Upadesayuje. that is the end of all poetry.‟ This is quite similar to the estimate of the Eastern critic who.e. ‘Visvasreyah Kavyam’ exclaims the great poet and Sreyah is clearly distinguished from Preyah by the Kathopanishad and it is that.