October 5, 2022


Connecting Asian writers with global readers

Essay Series: ​Living With Grief – Going From IS to WAS by Roopa Swaminathan (Part 1)

1 min read

This essay by Roopa Swaminathan is the perfect combination of poignancy, tenderness, and evocativeness. It can move you to tears and still make you smile.

“Former aide of Chief Minister Jayalalitha released from prison today!”

I was grading papers for my creative writing class when I heard the news playing on our television at a distance. Even though I was fully engrossed in correcting the short stories that my kids had submitted I perked up when I heard the headlines.

OMG! Sasikala is out! I have to tell Amma! I quickly dialed Amma’s phone number on my cell and waited. The phone rang and rang. And then I heard another phone ring. I thought someone was calling on my other cell and took it out of my handbag and saw the words “Roopa” on the screen. What the hell?

And then I remembered. And I quickly disconnected my cell phone. As always tears welled in my eyes even as I tried to come to terms with my life as it stood that day.

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