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Bhaskar Roy Barman (Dr.)  was born on February,19, 1950 at Badurtala. Comilla (now in Bangladesh, former East Pakistan). He is an internationally published poet, short-story writer, novelist, translator, critic and book-reviewer.  He did  M. A. in English literature, B. Ed. (Methods in Teaching) and D. Litt in Language and Linguistics. Ph. D. and  D. Litt. and is presently working as a teacher.  He has to his credit two books of fiction besides editing two books and translating one book.
Notable books : (i) Modern Short Stories : The Trap & other short Stories, (ii) Gateway to Heaven (Original English novel), (iii) Folktales of Tripura (iv) The Rhymester (a novel translated from bengali) and (v) Mélange : An anthology of short stories (translated from bengali)
Notable Awards & Honours (i) Twentieth Century Award for Achievewment (England), (ii)  Bharat Excellence Award (India)
(iii)
Tripura Ratna (India)  (iv) Rising Personalities of India (India)
Address
: South Bank of Girls Bodhjung Dighi Itakhola Road, Banamalipur, Agartala-799 001,(West Tripura) India
Phone :
0381-2200969  email : bhaskarroybarman@rediffmail.com or bhaskarroybarman@indiatimes.com or bhaskarroy_barman@yahoo.com

Selected Poems by Dr. Bhaskar Roy Barman

The Amaranth

The kaleidoscope stood be-frilled with splendor;
no messenger from on high did descend to hand
it blessings, though.
The rassling trees coruscated in an interplay of light and dark,
the sun dipping down the western horizon.
Exuding a unisonant desire to search for the amaranth,
a group of youths were chanting their way along the path
that led into the forest.
They had heard elders gossip about the amaranth
they had never themselves seen.
and tell themselves they had heard of the flower
from the cowboys who herded cows into the forest.
The youth wished the cowherds had sculpted the image of the amaranth
on the bark of the trees.
The amaranth was said to blossom when the light of the departing day
intermingled with the darkness of the incoming night.
Save for the interplay of light and dark
the kaleidoscope has nothing else to boast.
No messenger did descend from on high
to hand it blessing from High.
Someone might have deciphered the speech of the forest.
Ahead was a great hole caressed by darkness,
where no light was allowed to intrude.
The kaleidoscope uncrowned with blessing from High
always changed colors to beguile you off the great hole.
Did the amaranth bloom in or around the great hole?
wondered the youths.

 

The Table in a Restaurant

The moment I close my eyes
in meditation on the unfathomable
I visualize golden fleeces of cloud
perambulating the skies
and old faces peering down through the fleeces,
their faces writhed into a semblance of smile.
With them I used to sit at a table in a restaurant
by the window overlooking a garden.
The smells of the garden-flowers
Would spatter against the window-pane.
They left me closeted with the ever-changing world.
I feel, whenever I sit at the table, their hanging around the table.
I glory in living in the ever-fresh changeability
of the ever-changing world.
They have stuck at the last words
they had uttered at the table
and at the last glance they had thrown
through the window around the garden.
I can have trees felled. If I like to -- I often do,
for it fetches me a good amount of money - I can,
if asked to, stand on a dais to deliver a mellifluous speech
on the necessity of afforestation.
I can attire myself in ultra-modern habiliments
when I go out with my wife to have people think
we are but a happy couple,
and to get ourselves photographed to remind ourselves
we married each other one day.
But they remain clothed in the garments
they had worn at the table.
In meditation I visualize them mocking me,
for I have shut my eyes to the truth of life.
 

 

Jimmy
( a poem in remembrance)

Jimmy,
a black, snub-nosed bitch, a jaw shoved out,
your eyes throwing forward a wrinkled reproachful look,
your fur so brindled as to give one to understand
you were not pure,
receded into oblivion.
Suddenly you intruded into our memory
when we were observing the third death anniversary of our Father.
About this time three years ago
Father was admitted to the hospital
believed to be a gateway to the abode of Death-
he had suffered a stroke at the machination of a Death-messenger.
Wifely-sonly-daughterly duties marshaled us
round his bed in the hospital.
No one had enjoined upon you the dogly duty
 

 

to be on guard over the house.
We completely forgot about you;
We forgot you have appetite to appease.
We enjoyed staying in the hospital
and doing our duties turn by turn by our Father,
for it turned out pleasant
eating in one of the hotel that mushroomed around the hospital
to cater to the needs of relatives of the patients
admitted to the hospitals.
Over the seven days we stayed in the hospital
you had guarded our house lest a thief break into it.
Hunger had not deterred you from your dogly duty-
no neighbour had given you food.
When we brought home Father dear
You gave us mute solace,
then succumbed to hunger.

COMMENTS ON BHASKAR ROY BURMAN'S  NOVEL, ‘GATEWAY TO HEAVEN’  by Dr I.K. Sharma, Jaipur

I have gone through the novel 'Gateway to Heaven' written by Bhaskar Roy Burman twice, maybe thrice to understand the magic of author's work. I find it a work of high literary merit wherein the author celebrates the birth of Reader without killing the Author. The Reader (Abhik-Arati: duo) is both sensitive and sensible; he (I use it for both) actively participates in the life of the author. He asserts his identity, mediates, and channelizes the fluid mind of the author. At the same time, the author too takes interest in his future life and consciously surrenders to his proposal. The interweaving of the Author with the Reader and [the] Reader with [the] Author, I think, is the glory of the novel.

The celebrity author who goes out of Calcutta to write a new novel writes instead a new chapter in his own life. He looks backward (memory and attachment) and the Reader looks forward (dream). This tactical yoking of the two shapes and solves personal crisis of both the affected parties. The Reader becomes the teacher and the(sic)guide and the author divested of his boosted ego finally gets converted to the sect of family. His return to the traditional ideal of a happy married life implies a cure-all for all the ailments (brokenness, displacement, fragmentation, etc.) of the technological age.

The tenth chapter of the novel is as valuable as the 10th chapter of the Srimad Bhagwad. There the interaction between the Author and the Reader is  marked by nuance of difference - I mean the culture that promotes debate and values difference of opinion. Steadily the Reader is elevated to a higher position wherein he scatters the pearls of earlier work of the Author. That warms the heart of the Author and benumbs his sense of superior brilliance.

This clean novel deserves a high place in the history of Indian English fiction.


REVIEW OF THE NOVEL, ‘GATEWAY TO HEAVEN’  By Professor Indra Mohan

The novel (Gateway to Heaven) narrates a writer’s life - his search for meaning, the social pressures, realization and his ultimate reconciliation to reality. Arindam Basu, the writer, writes about the rural life in Bengal and when he goes to live there, the rustic politics weaves a web around him. His desolate condition. after he divorces his wife, leaves him aimless and frustrated. The episode of the young lovers, Arati and Abhik and their agitated attitude over the divorce issue of Arindam brings about reconciliation in Arindam. He understands that a writer should be swayed away by emotion but should devote himself to mirroring social realities. The novel also brings into focus the petty politics in which people involve themselves whether it is in a city or a village, which shows the inherent quality of man to attain power at any cost. Furthermore, the novel also speaks of the women’s liberation movement which in a way impedes certain happiness between man and woman and it ultimately spoils the ‘gateway to heaven’. The movement indirectly kills the fine fabric of domestic relationship between husband and wife and the conjugal life as well. The novel, ‘Gateway to Heaven’ by Bhaskar Roy Barman pictures a typical Indian social order with all its socio-political undertones. It makes a good reading for a discerning reader. It is also a fine creative work in the domain of Indian Literature in English.
 


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