Tia Chopra, all of 14, is braving the storm of thoughts inside her heart by using words as her weapon of might. She is a reticent child, her sincerity being her most obvious accessory in the school. However, give her a mic and watch her recite away her verses with the confidence and grace of a seasoned poet. A poet, that is what this girl is. As someone who began writing at the tender age of 10, Tia’s writing has come a long way. We have published her poems earlier on the school blog, which may be read here.
A recent moment of happiness in her life happened when her debut book of poems – A Mirror of Perceptions – was published! With reviews on the cover by seasoned writers like Kiran Desai and Sudeep Sen, this book contains some deep and moving verses on a wide range of themes. Needless to say, she makes us proud, not just for her achievement, but for pursuing her passion with discipline and consistency.
We caught up with Tia for a small interview, to know more about the book and the poet which resides in her.
Why the name ‘Mirror of Perceptions’?
Mirror of Perceptions is one out of the many poems that I have compiled into the collection. This particular poem was chosen as the title because it really allures me. This poem shows a mirror to who you yourself are and the many perceptions of your own that you carry based on how the world looks at you.
What are the primary themes you present in your poems?
Everything! I get inspired by many things, sometimes as small as an expression, a quote or even a word. They all make me write. So in this book, you won’t find one or two themes, but a range which spills all over the place.
What kind of poems do you write? Do you write in structure or like your verses to be free?
I somehow like writing rhyming verses more, because it has an inherent musical tone to it. Even though sometimes it makes little sense, I still rhyme it. It feels like a melody has come alive. The poem goes on like a hummable tune.
How do you write? Do you heavily edit your poems too?
When an idea strikes me, I like to pen it down immediately. I just need a notebook and a pen and I start off. That is my first draft. If I get time, I might re-do the draft and edit it to make it look proper, but mostly, I don’t get to this stage. So the first is my final draft.
How many poems are there in this book? Which two would you like to recommend to the readers if you had to?
In this book, there are 36 poems, compiled into an anthology by Wisdom Tree House. These are the poems I wrote between the age of 10 to 12. Wisdom Tree House, which publishes renowned authors, recently came up with a new imprint called ‘New Leaf’ for young, debutante authors. And for this imprint they began publishing with me. I do think it won’t be a very profitable, but I am really grateful to them for giving me this opportunity!
The two poems I would recommend for all readers to go through are – Mirror of Perception and The Echo of My Shattered Hope.
In the first poem, I compare life to a game of chess. I also pose that in life, everything is not split into black and white, and one must learn to navigate through the greys. The second poem is based on the life of a street dog. This one came to me when I observed that animals, strays especially, are not treated with kindness in our city surroundings.
What’s been the best compliment which your poems have received?
Some people tell me that they don’t really understand the depth of my poems, and for some reason, I like it. It makes me feel that there is an entire world I construct with my poetry which some people can get and some cannot.
To this poet and the world within her imagination – we wish more power, and success!
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