Opening of the Heart- is Prakash Mahajan's first collection of fifty poems. Most of the poems voice responses to deeply personal experiences, situations and events. The expression is generally transparent and shows no excessive fondness for figuration and embellishment.
Although one can easily group many of these poems in thematic dusters like love, music, nature, tribute to artists poets and the great people( like J. Krishnamurti ) and reflections on the nature of suffering grief,the mood is generally sombre. A lucid and laconic expressions of this entire emotional gamut is available in in lines like this : "I have been in love/ I wait and face my gloom so dark"(The Floating Fear).This abiding premonitory tone is reinforced in a powerful phrase like "But I know ,hurricane comes one day" (The Awareness). In ''Heart Patient' it is dramatized more impersonally.
One easily notices the poet's love of music. Indian classical music, as several poems either directly talk about it or make use of it as a recurring expressive device. Music takes the poet to "realms beyond time"('Remembering the Concert') and sometimes even acts therapeutically as it brings "carnival of tomorrow's hopes"('While Listening Rag Basantbahar') No wonder that the collection has has been dedicated to Bharat Ratna- Pt. Bhimsen Joshi, whom the poet is privileged to know personally.(Incidentally the cover painting is bu Jayant Joshi who is Bhimsen Joshi's talented painter son.).Prakash Mahajan is lucky because the senior poet Dilip Chitre has written foreword to the collecton and even helpful in editing some poems in the book.
Chitre's pithy words from the foreword- "If you want your poems to be taken seriously by others, you must yourself take them seriously. Poetry is serious work like music or like painting ; and it takes a lot of concentration. You need to focus your attention in a certain way you write poetry. Yon need to know what poetry is and how the language of poetry works differently from the way language is otherwise used..
Hindu Religious Poetry by Sengamalam
A Gang of Five by Sabarna Roy
Let There Be Rain by Shafiqul Islam
Padya-Sankalan by Sachindra Kumar Verma