Everybody feels a sense of coming back to home while reading anything written by one’s favorite writer. And The Namesake ironically, is a novel about coming back to one’s home or more precisely , one’s roots. Having read it after The Lowland , Jhumpa Lahiri’s true to self description of the Bengali way of Life and of Kolkata, and how these two mingle and make thier way into the households Bengalis living in the States, was not a surprise. For example, how a package from homeland, after travelling thousands of miles can bear the smell still of the dominant spice of your mother’s kitchen. Jhumpa Lahiri , does not ever go straight into the life of the protagonist but goes on detailing the live of his or her family, as it is them who builds a self. But as the story goes on, and the namesake and its significance is revealed to us, the readers, it becomes evident that Ashoke was not only the person who gave Gogol his namesake, he was also the person who lent him his ”overcoat” through his life. This particular instrument which shapes the whole novel at the end is beautifully depicted in the movie adaptation of the book by Mira Nair. Gogo,l, from infancy till his thirties, did everything , he could to make his place and belong to a country he was born in , but always with a prevalent cry in the background from the two abodes of College Street and Alipore, calling him to be part of that life. The first sense of relating to the place where he was born took place with the dead people , in a graveyard.
Coming back to the context of the movie, the only difference that mattered except the small ones like changing the name of Dimitri without any cause, is that, in the movie the relationship of Gogol’s parents as a married couple was not less forced than the one in the book.
The story is not about the several journeys made by Ashoke and Ashima to Kolkata but a journey of the protagonist’s slowly coming back to his roots rather than going far away from it as he was never actually there.
This is a science fiction written by a twelve year old. By the wool gathering of a mind with hope, docility and faith.
The year is 2077. There lives a girl named Mary in a house with a big garden. Mary is good-natured and honest. One day , she was playing with her friend at the garden of her house , when suddenly my she heard a sound. She looked here and there but couldn’t find the source of it. Then she saw that it was the tree beside her which was talking. She was in utter shock. The tree, then, started talking about its feelings. It said that humAns are destroying them day by day,thus their population is decreasing. For that,many animAls are dying as well, as they depen d on them for food, like the deer. This is how the foodchain is breaking , which,in the long run , will ruin man ultimately. This scared Mary and she promised to herself that she will take cAre of this issue in whatever little way she can. From that day , she began planting trees often and encouraged everyone to do the same.
I see a dark , deep dungeon.
I am falling into it .Slowly, painfully.
When I look up , I see faces calling me up.
Some are giving their hands to pull me up as well.
Yet , I am falling into it gradually.
On some days, I feel a flash of soothing sunlight falling on my face.
But it doesn’t last long.
Sometimes , it comes again , but without the fortifying warmth.
Sometimes, I mistake a bit of light on my face for the Sun.
I open my eyes, it was just a firefly.
The bustle of one bus standing in the bus stop to take in as many people as it can
The people catching my eye while walking in the sidewalk while I sit at the farthesr window ~seat of the bus
The smile on my face of seeing a red flame tree on my way
The disappointment on the face of the woman with three bags after she misses the bus just because she was not fast enough
The conversation between a grandfather and his granddaughter , while the grand father takes the granddaughter back from school
All these seem like Summer now. some transient episodes , like a grasshopper lamenting the cricket’s departure, which once seemed mundane to our post ~modern mindsets. It once existed and surely will exist again but after this long phase of winter where ironically all the elements of Spring are thriving.
I have lost everything, Spring said to Winter.
All my blossoms, greenery – Everything.
You came and took away all my colour.
now it’s dark , gloomy and.. confusing!
nothing else can prevail once you arrive
How can you be so selfish?
Spring asked..and Left..
Winter smirked and thought,
If only you knew,
I have to be harsh, for you to be a lover – soothing as you are.
I have to be destructive, so that everyone gets how beautifully constructive you are. I have to be numb, so that they understand you are not
I have to be me, for them to appreciate who you are.
Weren’t we in a lockdown from some point of time in our life? Lockdown as we know is the closing of everything, the stagnation of our ‘’normal way’’ of life. But who can derive something definitive about what actually is normal? One can say that normal is what we have been doing since infancy. But as we grow older that ‘’normal’’ daily lifestyle changes as well, doesn’t it?
What is our present state of mind now? What almost all of us want to do now?To be set free from the bondage of something right?Be it home or/and the fear of something. But isn’t this what we face or seek most of our lives as well/ Even if when we could do ‘’whatever we want to’’, could we or did we actually did, whatever we wanted to?Did we just wake up one day with an extreme urge of going to Alaska or maybe even Nebraska and gone there just because we could do whatever we wanted to? Because life isn’t that easy, not now, and it never was.
Most of the people roaming the Earth lives in a state of lockdown for their whole life. Their life ends with an unfulfilled desire of going out or more precisely coming out. The people forced to live by their undesired gender identity. The people who went out , yes, went out of their houses everyday but were too scared to independently live by their sexual preference, choice of clothes, job etc. Weren’t they in a state of lockdown?Or are’nt they still in a lockdown?
The thing that troubles us is our lock up more than the lock basically! But weren’t we locked up from living our heart out ?loving our heart out? Aren’t we still? I can’t help but remember what Red from The Shwashank Redemption said,
I’M TELLING YOU, THESE WALLS ARE FUNNY.”
“First you hate them. Then you get used to them. Enough time passes, it gets so you depend on them. That’s institutionalized”
I know I’ll laugh again until I die
But I want to live again, until I die
Japan, Spring ~ A human enters a house of made of wood. It is April 8th. This year , Cherry Blossom is scheduled to come on the 19th. The human thought, what is he going to do in these 11days. He cannot even go back to where he came from, it will break his alibi. It’s that time of the year when the human commits the crime every year . But by the blessing of the cosmos , he gets the way of redemption. Mother Earth and Life conspire with each other to give way for peace. “Peace” ~the human thought, it has become a mockery of the magnanimity nowadays . But who was he to talk about that? This year too, on the 19th , he will be one of the many people who will go to The Sakura Front and watch the blooming. The Yoshino Cherry Tree always wins the tussle and blooms first. The petals will fall on his head, his shoulders and he will dust them off, but maybe not this year. He will see thousands and hundreds of faces there that day . Those unfamiliar faces will seem so kind, so familiar. Then the human will close his eyes and think about his crime, the crime that he is committing at this very moment and the also the arrangement for his alibi that he is making ~ at this very moment. Those red flowers that only bloom during spring in his country will never forgive him. The streets that are covered with the same flowers, the flower reflecting on the white buildings ~ all these scenarios would mark him as an offender. But they will not be able to do anything more than that as he has his alibi ready already. It’s 19th of April . The Yoshino Cherry has bloomed , as every year, he has witnessed it and he is free again from all his sins for a year. He won’t dust them off his shoulder this year , he will let them stay , but who is he to let them stay?After all , the human knows it’s fleeting nature. It’s transience.
Ever since I read The Kite Runner and now that I am reading A Thousand Splendid Suns, I have been very much interested about Afghanistan. They have changed my outlook towards Afganistan in a great manner. It moved me to think how the people there woke up one day and their lives just changed. They saw their motherland change, they saw it turn into debris both literally and figuratively. Everyday I searched different places of Afghanistan before and after 1970s.
But the present state of Afghanistan always had a foggy existence to me. But 2days before when I was returning from college I saw an exhibition of photographs portraying Kabul through its mayhem journey and its present life. Immediately I knew I will have to go there. So the next day I was awestruck seeing the beautiful photographs of the always beautiful city of Afghanistan. All the places I read about like Shar-e-naw , the portrayal of Hazaras.
The feeling was exactly the same as the feeling you get when you see the movie adaption of a book you just read. It was like Pride and Prejudice with the perfect Mr.Darcy in it.
If they let you come, the moment you come, they will decide whom you will love
If they let you come, they will put you in a school where there will only be humans of your gender
Because that will be safer for you
But during a crisis men would be the ones who will be called to save you , because obviously you are not enough to save yourself
If they let you come , they will stare at you in such a way , you would be bound to think what is wrong with you
If they let you come, they would never allow you to enter pure places in your impure state, but you giving birth would be considered the purest thing on Earth
If they let you come, they will save seats for you in public transport, because obviously you are not able to stand as them being the weaker sex
And if they let you come, they would say You had better not come.