Edappally Raghavan Pillai, along with Changampuzha Krishna Pillai, paved a new path of sensibility for Malayalam literature, not just the genre of poetry.
While Changampuzha explored the brighter side of life more, it was Edappally who often delved into the darker aspects of the human psyche.
This image of Edappally Raghavan Pillai got cemented when he committed suicide at the age of 37.
And now the city is remembering the poet by dedicating a public space in his name.
The park, built on 22.5 cents donated for free by the Kerala State Housing Board Allottees' Association, at Edappally is perhaps the only memorial for the poet in his home place, said N.A. Mani, councillor and chairman of Education and Health Standing Committee, Kochi Corporation. The park was constructed by the corporation and it was inaugurated on May 10.
Film on poet
The IT@School project has also made a short film on the poet to mark the death anniversary of the poet, which was on July 4. In just about 30 minutes, the film Maninadam attempts to make a sketch of the short, yet poignant life of the poet. The film – researched, written and directed by M.P. Jayan – seems to be hastily shot, as there are many anachronisms, some too obvious, in the film. Like a diesel train zooming past the actor playing the part of Edapally Raghavan Pillai.
On the positive side, literary critics M. Thomas Mathew and M.K. Sanoo and poets Chemmanam Chacko and Kureepuzha Sreekumar attempt to place Edappally in the proper context of Malayalam poetry. Most often, his position was either overshadowed by more popular Changampuzha or not read enough.
It is time due recognition is accorded to the poet, and the film, in a way, attempts to do that.
The park was constructed by the corporation.