HAPPY BIRTHDAY, STEFAN ZWEIG!

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Happy Birthday, Mr. Zweig!

I am so glad to have met you this year. Through your stupendously masterful Chess Story, you got into my book world like a summer rain; unexpected but alluring. Discovering multiple angles of psychological reflections in a slim novella of 80 pages was like hitting a jackpot; that sudden halt one comes to during a leisure walk at the sight of a sparkling diamond. The multiple facets of its work bore also a resemblance to your upbringing and the belligerent environment you spent most of your life in.

There is something so serene and beautiful in your writing that I find all my senses inadvertently active, most of the time; they work quietly to create a cognitive lattice within which I discover known and unknown fabrics of human emotions, touching each of them to feel their texture and holding many of them, close to my heart. Continue reading

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE!

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Happy Birthday, Mr. Shakespeare!

Ah! It is your birthday, once again and an excuse for me to celebrate all that I have loved about your pen! The riches you have amassed over your lifetime make it almost unfair to other authors; I mean who can fill such huge boots? Not that the reader in me complains! I first read your work when I was a kid, 8 years perhaps? But I clearly remember the thrill that ran in my blood while reading King Lear. Experiencing that enmeshing of relationships to highlight various emotions driving life and gathering them all into a few pages of brilliant, dripping prose was scintillating! And since I shared a wonderful buddy-relationship with my father, the experience was heightened as I did a joint-reading with him. I read that work twice and I remember, discovering more meaning on my second reading. The book was a part of a thin collection of a few of your works (The Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest and a few others) and by the time I finished them all, I was ready to relish more.  Continue reading

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, FYODOR DOSTOYEVSKY!

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I am sorry I fell sick and the birthday wish comes a tad belated, 6 days to be precise. But it is nigh impossible to have a week pass by without sending across my shout to you, Mr. D! You absolutely know how special you are, don’t you? That skill you have, ah! How envious am I of it? That wizardry of turning the mirror to reflect my darkest corners yet ensuring I never break the mirror in disgust! How clever, dear Sir! That surreptitious landing that you never fail to slip in, that soft cushion that you provide my feeble self while I stare agape at the unpleasant edges of my personality in your works – they all have a certain paternal feel to it. You are a wise elder whom I would love to share with people I think and wish good of. And even those I kind of don’t like all that much, so they fine-tune themselves to enter into my friends’ club! 😉  Continue reading

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ALBERT CAMUS!

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Bon Anniversaire, Monsier Camus.

You are a bit of a crazy guy and I guess you do know that, right? No, not in a bad way, certainly not! But like that patch of black cloud rubbing a perfectly sun-kissed sky, doing nothing but allowing itself to be suspended in a proximity enough to threaten the sunny painting. Whether the resultant rain will form a drizzle and caress away a nonchalant sun-bathing soul, leaving its skin without anything more than a tremor or it will assume the enormity of a downpour, erasing the unprepared soul of its belonging and stripping it to its bare elements, all soggy and wistful for warmth, is something you have debated in careful yet absurd tones in your books. I have not read you extensively but I have read you good. You have a question; a question to question. And you don’t mind getting any answers from others provided they don’t stop you from advancing on your search trails.

The first time I read ‘The Stranger’, I was a sprightly, doe-eyed teenager. I read the journey of Meursault and pondered: Continue reading

Happy Birthday, Italo Calvino!

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Buon Compleanno, Mr. Calvino.

You know, your name invokes multiple emotions in me; some I can put in words, others I cannot. Basically, what you do is exactly this: treat me like a friend but never lemme forget even for a second that you belong to a different world, a mystique and scintillating land, way beyond my reach. And that’s the sort of wierd reason why I love you. You are acutely aware of your superiority but you never intimidate; on the contrary, you inspire! Voila! Should I learn that from you? Hmmm.. You bet! 🙂 I have often wondered if I should bind your writing in the confines of magical realism, a genre you own like none other. But  then you scoop something like these from your box and shut me up good:

The unconscious is the ocean of the unsayable, of what has been expelled from the land of language, removed as a result of ancient prohibitions. 

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