By Mudabbir Ahmad
A good part of his day would be spent waiting, which of course was not very likeable — not because he had nothing else to do, but because Time liked him very much, or so it would seem to him. That thought was disgusting; the notion that it was in fact a fact was dreadful. Time liked him so much that she stayed with him, refusing to pass and even if she did, she would stretch herself all over him, like a monstrous dragon spreading its wings, eclipsing the sun and spitting a shadow all over the ground. I am using an example from my fantasy, may be because it is easier for the human mind to conjure fantastical elements, to explain Time. But in all honesty, and this has taken serious courage to write, Time was not a dragon to him, she was something much more terrible, much more torturous and horrible to even contemplate- she was eternal.
Time was in love with Argos. It was a bestial kind of love-savage, pure and perhaps too much to be contained in meek words that I put here. She fed off Argos, and Time was one hungry beast, gluttonous and without the slightest mercy. Read more
The just concluded Kitaab Literary Festival in Lucknow saw interesting discussions on intertextuality and micro literature
At a time when a strongly intimidating and equally tantalising wave of certitude and homogeneity has been sweeping the world and law-induced violence runs amok, what can provide us with an alternative comprehension of the reality? It is an intriguing sense of inconclusiveness that triggers and acts like a catalyst to deal with various vexed issues as it prevents people from trying to outdo each other.
This incredible conceptual creative solution is offered by a celebrated Singapore-based author Zafar Anjum who participated in an international literary festival held in Lucknow in which many prominent writers in English, Hindi and Urdu, belonging to India, Singapore and Malaysia participated. Zafar Anjum, in his widely- acclaimed story, “Kafka in Ayodhya” refers to the vexed Ayodhya issue and the quest for solution prompts him to explore the nuanced connotation of the incompleteness and the space around it. In line with his existentialist leanings and Kafkaesque tradition, the protagonist of Zafar’s story spells out the contours of solution:
“Leave the structure as it is. Incompleteness is also a quality, a facet of nobility. It has a capacity for silence. At least, that’s what I do with my work.”