Ayesha Chatterjee’s poem on Canadian Parliament website
George Eliot Clarke, Canada’s 7th Parliamentary Poet Laureate has selected a poem by Ayesha Chatterjee from her “Clarity of Distance” published by Bayeux Arts. The poem, ‘The Last Generation’ can also be seen at the following weblink – http://www.lop.parl.gc.ca/About/Parliament/Poet/poem-of-the-month-e.html
The Last Generation
We will be the last generation to speak
in voices foreign to everyone but ourselves.
A nation slyly swaggers its name
and we watch through windows and from the safety of newspapers,
eating the bitter fruit of the truly dispossessed.
Our homes are in the dry dirt of the missionary schools
that taught us guilt in peppermint paper and disinfectant,
that changed history to change us, turning
and turning us until we believed
we were better than our quicklimed, bloodburnt selves.
We dropped like flies in the independent sun,
through shiny-badged cracks back
into the world we fell from, over and over.
But the red stone benches are crumbling now
and the long-bladed ceiling fans stir other tales.
Our homes are in the phantom, rasping streets
mapped in yesterday’s rain and half discarded
even by us. In the sweeping maidans and foaming racetracks,
in the cinema halls with the laced names—Elite,
Globe, Majestic, New Empire—in the double-tongued
clubs and the temple walls, in the tinsel and the bhang,
in each of these we claim our stake. We carry our umbilical cords
with us, coiled in our pockets for comfort.
But at every open door, we will be asked where
we are from. We will be the last.
Bayeux Poet Derk Wynand’s poem from the volume “Past Imperfect, Present Tense” has been selected by Vancouver’s Poetry in Transit. Congratulations Derk.
Like many of my fellow countrymen and I am sure many thousands around the world, I have elected to give parts of my body, upon my death, for transplants or medical research or any other purpose that these parts may be deemed fit for. It occurred to me to contemplate what value such a wish might have had if I were a passenger on Malaysian Airlines Flight 17.
As long as we have stories, songs and paintings, the West will continue to live. Bayeux Arts has been fortunate in having discovered the great Twin Butte, Alberta, storyteller who is a writer, painter, musician, and real-life cowboy all wrapped in one.
The last few days have been terrible. One blow after another to shake our faith in human nature.
First, there was the spoilt and deranged, rich kid in Santa Barbara, California, who gave vent to his sense of rejection by women through the act of killing five students.
What a week it has been for India and Indians all over the world. Joy, elation, anger and frustration are some of the emotions that spilled over in the wake of India’s momentous national elections.
So the people have spoken, so to speak.
The incoming Prime Minister of India and his soon-to-be-formed ministerial cabinet have their work cut out for them, which essentially means cleaning out the filth and garbage of the past.
The School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London has announced a gift of £20 million (approximately $32 million) from the Alphawood Foundation in Chicago to advance the study and preservation of Buddhist and Hindu art in Southeast Asia.
The two novels featured above – “Krishna, A Love Story” and “Rahul, A Different Love Story” – both set in the early 1970s, use a cultural backdrop where the last vestiges of the British Raj are slowly being trampled under an emerging identity of ‘Indian-ness’,
When India held its first democratic elections in 1952, many thought it would be India’s last. The air of cynicism has dissipated over the years. Gandhi, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, Jawaharlal Nehru, Vallabbhai Patel, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Sarojini Naidu and other great political leaders of sixty years ago have passed away.