The Many Manifestations of Father

Arindam explores the various meanings and manifestations of fatherhood ahead of the Father’s Day. He presents a preview of the special feature on this occasion in Different Truths. Through seven pieces, by as many authors and poets, homage is paid to that person’s father. A wonderful mosaic of writings is offered to the readers.

Often fathers are trapped in their own image. As head of the family, stoic and stern, equanimity is his middle name. A father would suffer, silently often, but he seldom shows his chinks to his children. The feudal hangover of a generation made them pay a price. Things are changing. Fathers are friendlier, more open. Still one senses the remnants of the feudal pride. It’s a complex relationship. He denies his frailty for to accept it is to belie fatherhood, in his eyes.

Fathers have a special relationship with daughters. He is partial towards them or happily turns a blind eye to her mistakes. He exemplifies the izzat (honour) of the family, the lofty traditions, expecting his children to take the cue. That does not happen.

Different Truths explores the various shades and hues through seven interesting pieces, in its special issue on Father’s Day Sunday, June 19).

We are publishing poems, letters to fathers, memoirs and a book extract on Friday (June 17) and Saturday (June 18). Another special feature on the World Refugee Day (WRD), which is on June 20, will go live in DT, a day in advance, on Sunday (June 19). Watch this space!

The three items published on June 17 are:

Anumita Chatterjee Roy, in her letter to her Bon (younger sister), talks about their life and times with their Baba (father). The author moves from the present to the past, reminiscing their childhood and worrying about their father, whose advancing age has made him frail and forgetful. Here’s her tribute, A Letter to my Younger Sister about our Father.

Urooj Murtaza soulful piece is poignant. It’s a memoir that reads like a prose-poem, My Father, My God! She remembers the day he was in CICU and two years later, when he passed away. In her tribute the author says that the demise of her father made her anchorless.

In her poem, Blessing my Dad, Sushmita Gupta pays her tribute to her father. It’s her homage to her father on this special day.

The four pieces published on June 18 are:

Staying far away from her father, who lives all by himself, despite his advancing age, Shail Raghuvanshi writes a soulful letter to her father, in Letter from a Daughter to her Father. Traditions and views differ and in the crumbling social structure both father and daughter suffer, away from each other.

The poem, Of Fathers, and Daughters, is Lopamudra Banerjee’s small dedication to the bond that her daughters share with their father, her husband, and to her childhood, that comes back, in spurts.

Missing Baba is Subhajit Sanyal’s homage to his father, his best friend, replete with childhood memories and the person his father was, on Father’s Day.

Dad & The Longings are two chapters of the autobiographical novel, A Beautiful Mistake, by Maya Khandelwal. The author says that these are two of her favourite chapters from her novel that beautifully describes her relationship with her father. A book extract.

What is Father’s Day?

The prevalent literature on Father’s Day informs us that it is a popular celebration in many countries in the world.

The idea of Father’s day celebration was first given, in 1909, by Sonora Louise Smart Dodd, a loving daughter from Spokane USA. Sonora was very much attached to her father William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran. She felt that if there is a day to honor mother then there should also be a day to honor father. Sonora struggled relentlessly to make the idea a reality.

Finally, in 1972, President Richard Nixon made Father’s Day a national observance. Today, Father’s Day is celebrated in several countries across the globe. Though the date and manner of celebrations differ, everywhere people take opportunity of the day to honor their father and express love for them.

Initially meant to honour fathers, it soon expanded to included forefathers as well. These days, Father’s Day include any person who may be likened to a father. The celebrations include stepfather, grandfather, father-in- law, uncles or any other man who is as protective and caring as a father. It involves presenting gifts, special dinner to father and family oriented activities.

Happy Reading. Happy Father’s Day!

©Arindam Roy

Pix from Net.

Arindam Roy

Arindam Roy

Arindam Roy has 35 years experience in various newsrooms. He was the Managing Editor of a reputed Gurgoan-based Citizen Journalist portal and has held senior positions in several publications. As Correspondent and Bureau Chief, he has written extensively for Associated Press, Times of India, Hindustan Times and multiple news outlets. He has contributed 13 chapters to various publications. Of these, seven chapters were published in two Coffee Table Books, published by the Times Group. He is a co-author of a novel, Rivers Run Back that he penned with Joyce Yarrow. The novel was launched at the American Centre, New Delhi, on January 2015. He lives in Allahabad.
Arindam Roy