Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Wee Fiction

Just had no time to keep the blog going, so confession time. I am taking my wee contribution to Andrew McCallum Crawford's blog and cutting and pasting it here along with the comments!

Hopefully I'll do better in October what with poetry week and lots of lit things happening all over.


A Wee Guest Fiction: Leela Soma
Desert Dreams

His body lay in the mortuary. The Company, the Indian Government and the UAE Government argued over repatriating the body.

Suman had arrived in Dubai to build one of the skyscrapers that rose from nothing. The company laid off the workers when the building boom went bust. His simple dream of providing a decent life back home in Kerala for his family evaporated. Beholden to the moneylender and desperate, he threw himself off the unfinished ninetieth floor. His dreams splattered on the sand with his lifeless body.

He remained an untouchable in birth and death.

Lotus Reads said...
Wow, this story is powerful, poignant and topical. Not a week goes by without a mention in the newspapers of some unfortunate construction worker in the Gulf who either died in an accident or was desperate enough to take his own life. I was deeply moved by this story and its thought-provoking last line! Thank you Leela Soma.
26 September 2011 16:42

Gerda Casier said...
Strangely familiar and poignant, every word at its place.
27 September 2011 18:09

Sunday, 11 September 2011


I am writing this on the tenth anniversary of 9'11 and the memory of that atrocity, and all other terrorist attacks including the 26'11 Mumbai bombing, makes me think of the innocent lives lost. Perhaps dwelling on it for too long is not healthy as the survivors and family of the victims have shown us their tenacity and strength to move on. September is the start of the new session and the range of new courses on literature at the university leisure classes is tempting me to register for some. Decision, decisions.
Two books that I 've read have left their mark. Howard Jacobson's 'The Finkler's Question' which made me laugh out loud in the opening chapter then moved to deeper thoughts on the question of Jewishness was a wonderful read. Sebastian Barry's 'A Long Long Way' , the story of a young man from Dublin off to fight in the Great War was gripping. His latest book 'On Canaan's Side' which is a sequel was serialised by Radio 4 recently and is a book that I must read. I am still reading 'Leela's Book' written by the British author Alice Alibinia, a clever blend of the ancient gods with a modern story that has me enraptured. It is not an easy read. The extensive research that Alibinia has done is evident and adds an important layer to the book. I am learning more of Ganesha, Vyasa and the epic Mahabharatha (which it parodies) from this book. It is an intricate plot with a lot of characters that one needs to persist with to enjoy. I was impressed with her cultural knowledge of Delhi, and Indian politics. One of the book reviewers on Twitter had put it aside saying it was unreadable as it had too many references to Hindu Gods and epics. I understand his view but it is a book that is worth reading in my humble opinion, especially if you are interested in India of the present and wish to delve in its rich heritage.

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