Apni ki adrsha markin nagarik hote chan (Do you want to be an ideal American Citizen?) is one of the most famous poems by distinguished Bengali poet Joydeb Basu.
Fasting isn’t my cup of tea. I can’t starve for long stretches: the highly acidic gastric juice demands food from time-to-time. I used to refrain from eating on several occasions: during the pujas at home, as the news of the death of someone dear to me arrived, when the guy from the nearby diagnostic center came to collect my blood sample.
I first interviewed Bitan Chakraborty back in 2015, prior to the release of his much acclaimed collection of short stories, Santiram-er Cha. The interview was then published at Dhaka Review. The journal has shut down and the piece is lost. Straight Bat comes handy as I approach the old charm. ‘আলোতে মানুষকে অবয়ব মনে হয়, আমি দেখেছি’—বিতান চক্রবর্তী প্রসিদ্ধ নাট্যনির্দেশক সুপ্রীতি মুখোপাধ্যায় প্রতিষ্ঠিত জঙ্গমে দীর্ঘ আট বছর থিয়েটারের প্রশিক্ষণ। আর সেই থেকে অল্পবিস্তর লেখালিখির শখ মাথা চাড়া দিয়ে ওঠে। যাদবপুর বিশ্ববিদ্যালয় থেকে ইনফরমেশন টেকনোলজি নিয়ে পড়াশোনা করা যুবকটি কোনোদিনও শান্ত মনে একটা চাকরি করে উঠতে পারেনি। দু-তিনটি প্রতিষ্ঠানে স্বল্প সময়ের জন্যে চাকরি করেছেন ঠিকই, তবে সে দাসত্বের বান্দা হয়ে থাকতে নারাজ। পারিবারিক আনুকূল্য ছিল, এ কথা যেমন মুক্তকন্ঠে বলা [...]
Friends are aware I’ve been living alone for eight years now. Of course, I’ve a family, consisting of my wife and son. Work that I do regularly does not allow me to stay with them. I’m living in a rented apartment for all these years—writing, editing, translating, and publishing both my stuff and that of other authors. Honestly, all these works eat much time and leave no space for personal recreations. My family suffers and so do I. However, it is now a standard routine—each day being an accurate replica of the previous day. You drop by our office; you will find me either reading (manuscripts by other authors) or editing (both others’ and mine) or writing (my stuff) [...]
To know about Rimi Dey I’ll let you read her words first, There are plenty of snakes around. Tigers as well. These tigers are like snakes. There are also a handful of other animals who resemble tigers. Most of the people are aware, I keep some of them in my pockets nowadays. Rimi is a widely published Bengali poet of the ’90s. Born in a tea-estate in North Bengal, she edits Podyo, a critically acclaimed Bengali journal that deals exclusively with poetry. Rimi has authored nine collections of poetry, including Banobhojan, her latest release (Hawakal Publishers Sept 2018). I’ve translated five poems from Banobhojan (Picnic) for your reading. I’m delighted to have included a critique by Dustin Pickering. He is [...]
“I love poetry/poets which guide my thoughts into new directions. Dr. Sengupta is one such poet. With “Beyond the Eyes” he painted a picture in my mind using colors I’d never seen before. Quite an achievement considering the poem’s brevity,” wrote Gary Manz, a friend and poet, as he shared his review of Healing Waters Floating Lamps on Amazon on July 18, 2015. Healing Waters Floating Lamps, a collection of my poems, was released in March the same year. I can remember I dedicated this book to the legendary Tagore who continues to amaze me with the profundity of his poems even now. Little did I know the book would fetch me the Rabindranath Tagore Literary Prize (2018), awarded [...]