Published: 26th May 2021
How the pandemic turned this nine-year-old from Hyderabad into a published poet
Nitya Baldava loves reading, so poetry seemed like a natural transition. The Hyderabadi took to it like fish to water and continues to churn out poetry that is well beyond her age. Check it out...
All hell would have broken loose if it wasn't tenderly held together by the poetry of Nitya Baldava. You see, back when Nitya was in class III, she lost a homework sheet and knew that there was only one way to keep her father's wrath at bay. "My father, Dr Pavan Baldava, likes poetry and has written a few poems himself which I have been privy to. I was an avid consumer of prose, until the day I lost that sheet. I realised that the best way to appease my father would be to write him a poem and that’s when I wrote my first one," narrates the now nine-year-old. But guess what? Her ploy actually worked, in more ways than one, in fact. Today, Nitya is an author of two published poetry anthologies Stay At Home (June 2020) and Spirit in You (September 2020).
Some of her must-watch videos are The Truth... A Puzzling Poem by Nitya Baldava and Hyderabad - The Pearl City
Oh, that's not all. Poetry and Nitya have come a long way. With the help of her parents, because poetry is a family affair in the Baldava house, this class V student started her own eponymous YouTube channel and an Instagram page @poetsaytin in June 2020. "You see, the pandemic left me with a lot of spare time on my hands," says the youngster. One of the most adorable videos on her YouTube channel is that of her great-great maternal grandfather reciting one of her poems and the best part about it is seeing the little girl introduce the 80-year-old while he lovingly looks on, filled with pride. "He is an admirer of poetry and was more than happy to oblige," adds the happy kid.
With the book | (Pic: Nitya Baldava)
Haiku, sonnets and free verse — this confident child has tried her hand at everything and credits her school, Oakridge International School, for introducing her to them and to metaphors, similes, figures of speech and other devices. "To be honest, it started with forced rhyming, but now I feel that it's flowing much more naturally," says Nitya who likes to commit the poem to digital paper as soon as it comes to her.
While her family helps with the camera placement, Nitya, being an inherently confident girl, is not camera shy and nails the rest of the process easily. She even won the inter-school oratory competition — Oak Orator — in the poetry category
When this young one came across the line 'everything will be all right in the end' in one of the books she was reading, she correlated it with the beautiful night rains Hyderabad was blessed with two weeks ago and the pandemic as well. "It is basically an imaginative poem where I look out of my window and see that every drop, no matter which course it takes, plops to the ground ultimately. In another poem of mine, I personified a mask and urged people to mask up no matter what, even if they are posing for pictures," explains the small wonder. Surely, there is a maturity to be noticed in her poems and her thought process itself.
Nitya makes no bones about the fact that English is her favourite subject and reading, especially books by Ruskin Bond, Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl, continue to fascinate her as much as poetry — with which she tenderly holds her world together — does.
Two of her poems
HAPPILY EVER AFTER
Happily ever after
One that never comes
Neither with the simplest theories
Nor with the hardest sums
Why can't it be all smooth butter?
Spread with no bumps and dents
Where do they go, days of billion dollars?
How do they come, them of a few cents?
TO MY FAVOURITE BLUE
Of my Ma's food
Comfort and shade
Of my garden's wood
Books to read
Home I came
To my favourite blue
For more on her check out instagram.com/poetsaytin