Turning Back: An Anthology of Poetry by exiled Kashmiri Pandits reflects the pain and the anguish of those who had no option but to flee – having lost everything, they had to leave their native land, their homes hurriedly, hopelessly and helplessly for saving their own lives and also on account of political reasons and/or in the face of ethnic cleansing. Exile is one of the earliest phenomena of human existence and it brings with it the perspective of ordinary people, who devoid of hope, with endless questions in mind, like: “why are we wandering”; have the burning dream/desire to turn back to their lost homes; someday, while living with sorrow, ache, longing and distress in exile
distress in exile, and each day with their pain of memories and weeping eyes they try to build a home away from home thinking with sadness of what could have been. This collection of poems is replete with traumatic insights of people who had to leave everything behind –run to find safety – flee for survival when gun shots were booming all around, relatives and friends were being killed and Mujahedeen voices were saying – “Leave the Valley”. The Anthology is a must read for the ardent poetry lovers who wish to comprehend the mindset of the exiled Kashimiri pandits via landscape of expressions of the exiled Kashmiri diasporas per the emotional pull of each poem of the Anthology.