A day to remember, an evening to cherish forever. Yes, 25th August, Saturday was absolutely the best date in the calendar, and I just couldn’t leave my diary pages behind without writing few glorious words about this mesmerising evening. Getting an invitation from the author herself, I feel privileged enough to attend such wonderful session of book launch, followed by panel discussion in the presence of eminent personas and a delightful poetry session. The book “Woman And Her Muse: Poetry and Memoir” by Lopamudra Banerjee is an absolute tribute to the literary and artistic inspirations of the poet’s life. Being a Bengali, though she lives far away from her city of joy, at Texas, USA, she still visits her motherland with emotional attachment to the roots and recreates the memories she had explored ages before.
With an enlightened introduction of the poet from Dr. Sanjukta Dasgupta, the book launch ceremony was presided by eminent guests and renowned authors and academicians. Once the book launching was done, the next session of panel discussion started, in presence of Dr. Sharmila Dey, Saheli Mitra and the poet herself, who presented some facets of her journey with the book with a strong intense message, regarding the resonance of sound and silence. Her poetic voice for humanity, including snippets from the streets of Kolkata has been depicted through the words of her poetry and musings in the book. Encapsulating the tribute to 100 years of cinema, travel musings, feministic poems and prose-poetry and the richness of Kolkata, Lopa di wants to leave a legacy for her daughters, who will be aware to grasp the inescapable beauty of their motherland in the near future. In the memorable session, Saheli Mitra , a writer and nature lover, as a panelist reads out an excerpt from a memoir from ‘Woman and Her Muse’ titled ‘The Topography of The Fertile Mind’, where a woman’s inner journey is depicted, along with the growing up phases of her daughters, and the recollection of her innocence during her old days.
Lopa di has written her words with much sensitivity and sincerity. Dr. Nishi Pulugurtha, Professor of English and a well-known writer herself, described Lopa di’s work as tectonic and diasporic literature with cityscape and haunting imagination. Just not only her mind full of words, Lopamudra Banerjee has surely highlighted one part of the book with Indian cinema, making it her inner sojourn with her feminine muses belonging to Indian cinema, including Charulata, Durga and Aparna of ‘Pather Panchali’ and Apur Sansar’, Churni Ganguly enacting the role of Taslima Nasrin, the author in her directorial debut ‘Nirbashito’, Yash Chopra’s ‘Silsila’, Gulzar’s ‘Ijaazat’, among others. The muse of every stage of her life as a woman and an artist has been reflected in her words, flipping through the pages.
From the thin alleys of Barrackpore and Kolkata India to the downtown of U.S., Lopa di’s journey has been remarkable with significant creations. Awarded with prestigious nominations across worldwide, she has really been a definition of culture and creativity. Associated with her city of joy, integrated with the cultural background of polished refinement, Lopa di is truly an inspiration for others. Rooted with her homeland, she is probably the best person to get motivation from. Gifting her one of my paintings is true note of honour for me. Thank you Lopa di for giving me the opportunity to witness your success story in such a wonderful evening at ICCR(Indian Council for Cultural Relations) Kolkata. The ambience, the flavour and the context of the event was glittery and a true combination of beauty and perfection. I feel glad to be part of your journey of writing and recreation of yourself everyday through your artistry.