WBRi Online Magazine - Creative Writing

Tick Tock (Poem)

Tick tock tick tock,
Time rushes by.

Teachers' Day in India: Celebrating the Legacy of Dr. Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan

“The best teacher is the one who suggests rather than dogmatizes, and inspires his listener with the wish to teach himself.”
- Edward Bulwer-Lytton


Image by surojitbasak2007 via Flickr

Calcutta, India, Aug 26, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) In India 5th September is celebrated as Teachers' day as a mark of tribute to the contribution made by teachers to the society. 5th September is the birthday of a great teacher Dr. Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan, who was a staunch believer of education, and was the well-known diplomat, scholar, president of India and above all a teacher. The day commemorates the birthday of Dr Sarvepalli Radhakhrishnan, a philosopher and a teacher par excellence, and his contribution towards Indian education system. Dr Radhakhrishnan believed that "teachers should be the best minds in the country". On this day, we gratefully remember the great educationist, apart from honoring all the teachers that have made our life much more knowledgeable and fulfilled, as serving as our beacons of light.

A Letter from Rachita

Actress Rachita Chauhan née Bhattacharya (Yeh Faasley, Uro Chithi, Rang Milanti, Chaplin) was recently allowed some days with her husband at the front-lines by the Indian army. You may recall we spoke with Rachita in this audio interview a few weeks ago. Rachita writes this letter from the inhospitable mountains of Kashmir.

[Actress Rachita Bhattacharya]I am presently at a location where cell phone connectivity is a luxury. A far off border village in Kashmir where a mere cup of hot coffee from the extensive network of cafe coffee day is an impossible proposition, I live in a small hut which has the bare minimum for a couple to furnish a house with...I live in stark contrast to my urban life at Kolkata or Mumbai. It is here where my husband is posted. I live amongst the olive greens. I am an army wife. The life in army is one of constant sacrifices. It has been over a year that Akhilesh and I registered. However shortly after the registry in July he was posted off to the borders of the country, joining the men on active duty to protect our frontiers. Therefore we never got to spend even a month together. Our marriage took its roots via hand written letters posted religiously every week to each other. The taken for granted email services aren’t an available option here. Life became a wait for these weekly letters and infrequent calls from him, for on active duty they don’t carry phones along and try and reach families via routed calls. It was all about counting days till we could see each other again. Families aren’t allowed in such postings due to security issues so while I was facing the camera at Kolkata and Mumbai my husband was spending months in bitter cold, living in a bunker where ambushes and firings are part of his everyday life. On very rare occasions the army grants the permission to wife to join her husband for a limited number of days. And quite out of the blue I was granted this very rare privilege. The dates unfortunately clashed with the release of Chaplin with no scope of rescheduling ...

"REJECTION" - An English Short Story by Santwana Chatterjee | WBRi Online Magazine


By Santwana Chatterjee

A Short Story

Ma has to come. Kona declared. No, no, nothing doing, she hastily added as she saw Suresh opening his mouth. Lolita has given notice, she is leaving this Friday.

How can she leave so sudden! Suresh was exasperated. What does she want! Increase her salary, yaar!

She won’t stay. She is providing a replacement, her niece. But she is raw and has just come from the village. Knows nothing of city life and moreover, she is to be trained as a cook.

But why can’t you do that! Why call your mother on the drop of a hat. You know how I feel, Suresh sounded irritated.

Yes, so you say every time I call her .Pray tell me how I manage everything single handed! Tell me, na! Teach the new maid everything including cooking. Prepare nasta for Birju. Prepare him for school. And who will be here to receive him when the school bus drops him at the gate, hungry and tired. A little boy, all alone in the flat, with a new maid, who knows what type she would be. Or are you suggesting I leave office and stay home to look after your home and son!.

So Mrs Malati Roy arrived with her baggage to the utter discomfiture of Suresh ...

Read the complete short story in the exclusive online Magazine section at Washington Bangla Radio.

Guardians of Forgotten Vaults - A Poem by Rashmi Gowda on Treasure Discovered in Padmanabhaswamy Temple (WBRi Online Magazine)

Reshmi GowdaEditor's note: Rashmi wrote this poem after the recent discovery of six hidden treasure-filled chambers in Sri Padmanabhaswamy temple in Kerala. The temple is maintained by the erstwhile royal family of Travancore and the treasure has been officially valued at upwards of US$ 20 Billion.

Rashmi Gowda works for a medical device company in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. She grew up in South India, and moved to the US to pursue her MBA. She has been writing short stories, poems and travelogues for her blog rushwrites.blogspot.com and also worked as co-editor for her school's weekly magazine. She can be reached at rashmi.gowda [at] gmail [dot] com.

Ghosts of centuries past
Beheld the treasures and watched
Marauders crossing vast swaths of land
Pillaging, raiding streets paved with gold ...

Holding Hands (Poem)

Holding Hands
Here they once stood,

Cuppatea (Poem)

The soul is a teacup...

বসুন্ধরার গান - সান্ত্বনা চট্টোপাধ্যায় | Basundharar Gaan : Bengali Poem by Santwana Chatterjee (WBRi Online Bengali Magazine)

কত দিন পরে দ্যাখা হল আজ

বসলে এসে পাশে,

ফেলে রেখে তোমার যত কাজ ।

আসতে যেতে পথের মাঝে,


"Rivers of Red" - a Short Poem by Rashmi Gowda

Rivers of red

Rashmi Gowda

Rashmi GowdaEditor's note: This is a short poem on a maoist mass grave found in May of 2011. Rashmi Gowda works for a medical device company in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. She grew up in South India, and moved to the US to pursue her MBA. She has been writing short stories, poems and travelogues for her blog rushwrites.blogspot.com and also worked as co-editor for her school's weekly magazine. Rashmi can be reached at rashmi.gowda [at] gmail [dot] com.

"Patrons of A Letter Box" by Nirendra Dev : An English Short Story (WBRi Online Magazine)

Patrons of A Letter Box

By Nirendra Dev

A Short Story

Nirendra Narayan DevEditor's Note: Nirendra Narayan Dev (nirendev1 [at] gmail [dot] com), an acclaimed political journalist, is a special correspondent of The Statesman, New Delhi and author of the books Ayodhya : Battle For Peace, The Talking Guns North East India and Godhra A Journey To Mayhem. Nirendra was born and brought up in India's northeast and his father served with paramilitary force Assam Rifles. His blog is at bestofindiarestofindia.blogspot.com.

We have previously had an opportunity of talking to the author and have posted the audio recording of the interview.

This is Nirendra Dev’s fourth short story in the series. His earlier short stories published on Washington Bangla Radio are ‘The Pawns’, ‘Arms of Comfort’ and ‘The Guiding Sun, Soothing Moon’.

The struggle of memory against forgetting is one of the foremost of struggles. History holds the monopoly of the business of keeping memories alive. Standing in this landscape – isolated – I often picture my memories like a shattered mirror. Pieces all over. But the tales of two of my patrons would always be fresh in my memories.

It is difficult to appreciate the life of a ‘Letter Box’ in the landscape of a tiny Jotsoma village in Naga hills unless one has experienced. It was equally unique for human beings. There are certain places surrounded by a halo of excitement, if not romance. Jotsoma was one such place. In late eighties it was a small hamlet with the diversity from other Naga villages with a spacious campus housing state’s only Science College. The unseen wave of modernity was rubbing shoulders with Naga tradition. The institution was notoriously famous for churning out dozens of doctors and engineers every year. The ratio of successful doctors and engineers was quite higher than the pace they could find jobs or alternate source of employment.

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