Come February and the ‘romance’ fever kind of grips us too! This month’s issue celebrates and explores different perspectives of romance through stories, poems and personal essays, each one of them distinct and unique in their own way. We also have three pieces up in The Lounge that add variety to this edition. We hope you like this issue that celebrates the mood of the season! Enjoy!
Sudha Ratnam shares her experience of growing up with films and what it was like to be among parents, aunts, uncles and cousins whose hearts melted over their favourite actors and actresses.
Could there be questions on love? Well, why not? Anupama Krishnakumar’s piece captures some.
When all is well in love and suddenly, things take a different turn, a young bride is left waiting. M. Mohankumar pens a poem.
There’s a certain romance to being an aunt to your sister’s children. Vani Viswanathan wonders if she can bring some practicality into this romance and pick a favourite.
Saikat Das’ poem is an intimate monologue of a husband who tries to win back his estranged wife and discovers the love that still flows underneath the rocky texture of their mutual distrust. It is an invitation to rediscover the world of romance that lay buried in the power play of conjugal discourse.
Sajid and Kaveh give in to the guiles of the world but after all the vicissitudes, Ram Govardhan’s story explores whether true love prevails or not.
Shreya Ramachandran writes a poem that attempts to capture the difference between life as it is and life as you sometimes wish it were. It explores the tension between trying to be fine and experiencing a tiny regret that comes with feeling an absence.
Two words don’t go down too well with Vibha. ‘Good news’. Parth Pandya’s story dwells on Vibha’s connection with these words, exploring romance from a couple’s point of view.
A lover sees a bit of his love in everything in him, oblivious to the sights around. Malcolm Carvalho’s verse tells you more.
A young engineer, Dipen, discovers his fears at the offer of unconditional love from Juniper, his college mate, during their trip to Shantiniketan. Tapan Mozumdar tells the story, set in 1988.
Don Mihsill’s poem uses food as a central trope to explore the inherent “issues” in cross-cultural relationships. It contextualises this in an exploration of a scene of ‘meet-the-in-laws’.
An unexpected rendezvous provides Priyamvada an opportunity to find closure to a past relationship. Chaithali’s story has a funny twist to how Priyamvada achieved this.
THE LOUNGE | TURN OF THE PAGE Ajay Patri reviews ‘The Return’ by Hisham Matar, a harrowing but humane memoir about the conflict in Libya and the toll it exacted on the author’s life.
THE LOUNGE | SLICE OF LIFE Suresh Subrahmanyan gets nostalgic, and a tad misty-eyed about his childhood romance with the Radio, the BBC in particular. His love for the English language he largely attributes, among other things, to the BBC World Service broadcasts.
THE LOUNGE | STORYBOARD Soumyadeep Chatterjee writes about how Chaitanya Tamhane showed him that courtroom dramas usually occur without the element of drama, at least in this part of the world, through his Marathi film ‘Court’.