V for Veil

Apart from Lihaaf, the other Ismat Chugtai story I often return to is ‘The Veil.’ It has the most memorable image of a man fleeing his bride because she is too shy to lift her Veil on the wedding night, and he is too afraid to do it himself. I’m fascinated by why I rememberContinue reading “V for Veil”

To Bombay from Bombay

I must return to Bombay for several reasons. One because I tricked myself into believing that a poem is enough but it never is and two because I am reading Vivian Gornick. Seven years between you and a city of your childhood is enough to make you want to give up everything in its honour.Continue reading “To Bombay from Bombay”

Laugh like Sumitra

For as long as I can remember – I have always been a stalker, first, a writer second. Even when I am not writing, I am stalking. It isn’t worrisome because if stalking happens then can writing be far behind? I have spent some spectacular nights on my phone jumping from website to blog to YouTubeContinue reading “Laugh like Sumitra”

On Elena Ferrante

Finally, finally, finally. Sat down and wrote about reading Elena Ferrante. This is my first piece for The Open Dosa and I’m thrilled that it’s about Ferrante. My students and I were just dying to talk about her at Meta this year. The following picture is from the day of the panel. This is myContinue reading “On Elena Ferrante”

Dedh Ishqiya aur Ek Lihaaf

This year’s general rule has been limited consumption of all that is good. Good food, good movies and good weekends. That explains why after Dedh Ishqiya, I haven’t watched a good Hindi movie this year, well except Queen. Somewhere in the middle of January this year, I caught Dedh Ishqiya at Rex. I hadn’t watched itsContinue reading “Dedh Ishqiya aur Ek Lihaaf”

Sonal and some menstruating women

Sonal had to cook rotis for all of them today because she was the only woman at home who wasn’t menstruating. She cursed when the roti landed on the far end of the tava, leaving a thick, black line of coal on her wrist. The hob wasn’t being used today. A choola is normally usedContinue reading “Sonal and some menstruating women”

Plot calling the kettle black

Kitty’s life had just changed  I am going to write a short story about a girl whose life is just about to change  The eagle is a majestic bird  I have never been so happy in my life  How do people find things to write about on days like these? Do I write about howContinue reading “Plot calling the kettle black”