Kalam has started a new series of Writing Out workshops with twelve young people of Vikramshila’s Nabodisha programme. Our sessions will happen henceforth at theVikramshila (VRS) centre opposite Lake Thana, Dhakuria, every Wednesday, 6-8 pm.
After our work with Durbar did not work out after the first couple of sessions, we went on to form a partnership with VRS. These youngsters, aged 12-16 years, had already been part of a programme with VRS in which they had explored things like self, roots/places of origin and personal neighbourhooods through writing. VRS wanted us to hone their craft and imagination more.
The first workshop happened on 16th January, 2008. It started off rather late as about six of them were coming in from Watgunj. But after half an hour’s delay, all of us were comfortably seated on a mat on the floor, with several tired, but eager faces around.
The first poetic attempt — a collaborative poem about “Rain”, most fertile of topics, follows.
Rain means —
A cloud-covered sky,
The joy of farmers.
Rain means children playing football,
Rain means downed shutters on the bus.
A pond filled with water,
Rain means the croak of a frog.
Small saplings budding,
Rain means walking with a raincoat on.
And one on “Night” —
Night means —
The cry of a jackal.
Seeing the night sky, the wish to write a story.
Night means being afraid,
And studying in the yellow light of a lamp.
Night means hanging out with friends in an open field,
Night means enjoying yourself in the midst of crowds on a Durga puja day.
Night means starting to dream.
Night means returning home,
And the twinkling of burning stars.