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Showing posts from October, 2014

Dear Scotty- Letters from F. Scott Fitzgerald to his Daughter

I was, of late, putting together an article on the letters of Francis Scott Fitzgerald or FSF. I have always been enamored by his writing. Fitzgerald had a daughter, Frances Scott Fitzgerald, whom he lovingly addressed as Scottie or Scottina. Scottie was borne in October, 1921, soon after Fitzgerald married Zelda, the daughter of a Judge, riding on the success of his first book, This Side of the Paradise.


Scott Fitzgerald’s later life was fraught with difficulties, financial and otherwise. He lived apart from Zelda who mostly lived out of hospitals, searching for the cure for her chronic depression. His later work could not replicate the early success of The Tales of the Jazz Age, and The Other Side of Paradise,  and his slip into abject poverty could not even be arrested by The Great Gatsby, which could get its due only after his sad death at the age of 44. He lived away Scottie, and wanted to teach her all that he could so that she may, in her own life be spared from all that pain. …

The Joy of Writing and Running

Writing, I took to when very young. But I am sure, it was more as a solace, a way out, than a reason for joy. I need to commit myself to something to really belong to it. That is the way it is with me. I believe, it is the same was with most me. I cannot proceed with things half-measure. If I do undertake any venture in half-measures, I am sure it will die its own death very soon, and certainly not with a bang, possibly not even with a whimper.

When I took to running, I did try to slowly step on the peddle, but could never step beyond the frivolous slow peddling pace. Then one day, much to widespread condemnation, domestic furor, I went out and bought a pair of quite expensive running shoes. I still blush when I remember the embarrassment with which I obtained that for myself. Then went about buying clothes for running, shorts, for the first time anything above the knees. But then, having committed myself to running, I did run. Having reached eleven miles and working towards the goal o…

Book Review - Savage Rose - Poems By Helle Gade

"If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold that no fire can ever warm me, I know that is Poetry" wrote Emily Dickinson. It that reflection of the world, that visual imagery were to be the sole definition of poetry, Savage Rose by Helle Gade, qualifies in flying colors. Helle is a great artisan of words and makes a great fabric of visual imagery.
She begins the book with 'Idun', her first poem. She writes,

"The Old elder tree blossoms Herbs break free of the ground Bright green beech unfolding and the swallow is chasing bugs."
The sensory liveliness is so noticeable, the imagery, one can even breath the smell of the picture she draws. Edward Hirsch wrote in his book, "The words move ahead of thought in poetry. The imagination loves reverie, the day-dreaming, the capacity of mind set in motion by words, by images." That is what poetry is, that is what Savage Rose is all about, picturesque words, grand sensual pleasure of worthy literature. 
I had…

Being A Father

Nonu is away to visit her paternal grandparents. She has left only couple of days back, but the gloomy silence that has descended seems to be century old. The days are old, gray and wrinkled with her thoughts, like dying, decaying sheets of moth-eaten pages. She calls me in the morning today and weeps for blocked nose. Nothing serious, change of weather, her mother tells me. She also tells me that Nonu told her that Baba would know what to do in such a situation. It was a leap of faith for the six year old, who also calls me Bhoolne waala Papu or forgetful father, on account of my absent-mindedness.
She knows that I would have no clue what to do. She also knows that I would have no way to reach out the treatment of common cold to her from Delhi, sitting hundreds of miles away. But she knew that she was calling her father. She wanted to share. A father is that not-so-good looking, not-so-smiling, angel who will have the cure to all our problems. The father is not only a moral compass f…