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Promising Poet

‘Don’t just chase likes and followers. Develop your poetic ability’

Shobhna Aggarwal, class 12 student at Apeejay School, Mahavir Marg says she only pens down the poetry ideas when the concept is crystal clear in her head



Apeejay School, Mahavir Marg student Shobhna Aggarwal is too well read a poet for her age. The class 12 student not only writes fluently in Shakespearean English but also enjoys reading the classical poets. In the Apeejay Promising Poet interview series, the Emily Bronte admirer speaks about her latest poem ‘Vacant Eyes’ which investigates the feelings of despair in human life. Edited excerpts:

Since when did you start writing poems?

Actually, I have been writing since a very long time, from as early an age as I can remember. I would write short poems that didn’t really make much sense back then. I just loved to write. Now I read more so that I can write better. I don’t remember at what age I wrote my first poem but I remember that I had written a short story for my school magazine when I was in class 2.

What was the inspiration behind writing poems?

I love to read literature. I see that it’s a great way to vent out your emotions when you don’t want to tell anyone how you feel. Secondly, sometimes you think about things that are not really happening in real life, like when we read books we get transported to some other world which is totally fictional. Then I write down all that I am thinking. I write it in the form of poems instead of stories.

Who is your favourite poet and what is your favourite poem?

My favourite poet is Emily Bronte. I love all her poems but her poems ‘Stars’ and ‘A daydream’ are my favourite. She writes on morbid topics but you still like the poem

We rarely find people writing in Old Elizabethan English these days. Your poem Vacant Eyes was written in the same style, which is a commendable act in itself. Tell us about the story behind the poem? 

I was waiting in a public place. So, there was this person who was sitting beside me and staring somewhere in the distance. I didn’t know who he was or what he was thinking. His eyes were gazing somewhere, lost in another world. His gaze was very vacant. After watching him, I thought there are so many people who have money, family and fortune but still they feel like they are missing something and are not happy with their lives. 

Tell us about your process of writing a poem?

Most people tell me that I should immediately write down in the notebook whenever I get an idea. I however don’t do that. When I get an idea, I keep on processing it in my mind. When I have a very clear concept in my mind that I want my poem to go this way, only then I write it down. Else, I feel I am unable to convey completely what I am actually feeling. So I want it to be absolutely perfect. Once I start writing, it takes me 30-40 minutes to complete the poem.

What are your upcoming poems?

I have written 3-4 poems which are all inspired by Emily Bronte ( I am very inspired by her works of late). ‘Wind I Loathe’ and ‘Rendezvous’ are my latest poems.  

What advice would you like to give to a budding poet?  

I feel a lot of people have a lot of talent inside them. But unfortunately, we live in the age of social media where there are a lot of Instagram poets who don’t give time to their writing. They are only chasing followers, likes, etc. There are a lot of people who have the talent to write good literature. They should not feel the pressure of social media and ruin their ability.  

How does your school Apeejay Mahavir Marg help you to write such beautiful poems?

I am glad that I have very nice English teachers in my school. I always look forward to the English lectures but I have never read my poems to my teachers. I read them to my friends at school. They give me a very secure and warm environment. 

Arijit Roy is a young correspondent at Apeejay Newsroom. He has done his masters in English literature from Delhi University and has a book of poems published by Writers Workshop India. He can be reached at [email protected]