First published in the monthly review Arya from 1917 – 20 and later partially revised by Sri Aurobindo, this book sets the groundwork by examining the essence of poetry, its rhythm and movement, its style and substance, its vision and power, and how poetry evolves as an expression of the national mind and spirit. Using the trend of English poetry as his context, Sri Aurobindo surveys the evolution of poetry and then posits the ideal spirit and form of a future poetry that will give voice to the deepest soul of man and of the universal spirit in things. The book also includes the essay “On Quantitative Metre”, an essay published in 1942.
“The light of truth, the breath of life, great and potent things though they are, are insufficient to give poetry the touch of immortality and perfection, even a little of which is enough to carry it safe through the ages, unless the soul and form of delight and beauty take possession of the seeing of truth and give immortality to the breath and body of the life. Delight is the soul of existence, beauty the intense impression, the concentrated form of delight; and these two fundamental things tend to be one for the mind of the artist and the poet, though they are often enough separated in our cruder vital and mental experience. These twin powers meet, make a consonance of the perfect harmony of his work and are the first deities he serves, all the others only group themselves about them, strive to be admitted to the soul of delight and the privilege of beauty and have to make themselves acceptable to them before they can mix with them in a compelling and attracting oneness” – Sri Aurobindo (The Future Poetry pp. 254)
Download a PDF of The Future Poetry
Sri Aurobindo’s Theory of Poetry article by Goutam Ghosal, published in “New Race” journal Vol. XII-II April 2011
SABDA catalog listing for The Future Poetry
Goodreads.com listing for The Future Poetry