No price too high: Why a poetry book priced at ₹2,750 is selling like hot cakes in Tamil Nadu

Photos: Uyirmai Publications

“Emakku thozhil kavithai.”

(My occupation is writing poems.)

When Subramania Bharati (1882-1921), one of the greatest Tamil poets, made that statement, he was met with laughter.

Present-day Tamil Nadu, however, is brimming with people trying to make a career out of writing poems.

Many in literary circles believe there are more poets in this state than readers of poetry. In Tamil Nadu, a state where a new poet is born every day—the observation, at times made frustratingly and at other times made appreciatively—by some Tamil writers is laden with truth.

Not too long ago the emergence of new poets happened only in literary magazines or in the Sunday supplements of major Tamil......