Circular Horizons, Impossible Journeys: Imagining the Tibetan Fatherland in Tenzin Tsundue’s Poetry

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Author: Enrique Galván-Álvarez, Miyazaki International College, Japan
Published: April 2012
https://doi.org/10.22492/ijl.1.1.08

Citation: Galván-Álvarez, E. (2012). Circular Horizons, Impossible Journeys: Imagining the Tibetan Fatherland in Tenzin Tsundue’s Poetry. IAFOR Journal of Literature & Librarianship, 1(1). https://doi.org/10.22492/ijl.1.1.08


Abstract

Although better known as activist, Tenzin Tsundue is also a prominent Tibetan English poet. As part of a generation of Tibetans born in the exile chosen by their parents, Tsundue considers Tibetan his mother tongue but feels most comfortable writing in English. Hybrid in many ways, his poetry returns constantly to a, sometimes literal sometimes literary, journey of return to the ancestral homeland. For the second generation of Tibetans born in exile the journey "back" to the imaginary homeland is certainly one of discovery, but it is also one that never finds what it expects. Thus, the aim of this essay is to explore how the hope of return to Tibet is expressed in Tsundue's poetry through unconventional and circular journeys of discovery.

Keywords

Tibetan English, Tsundue, poetry, journeys, kora