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Buddhadeva Bose belonged to that generation of Bengali writers of the thirties and forties who fought tooth and nail to escape the all-pervading influence of Rabindranath to establish their personal idioms. He succeeded, but the fascination, admiration, and awe of the older poet remained.
He twice visited Shantiniketan with his family, once in 1938 and then in the summer of 1941, invited by the poet himself. The younger poet, who in youth rebelled against him, now worshipped him and truly loved him. The title of this memoir Sab Peyechhir Deshe (‘The land where I found it all’) says it all. He intended to give this book personally to Rabindranath as a gift of his deep appreciation, but, sadly, by the time the book came out of the press, Rabindranath had passed away. And what had been conceived as a gift of gratitude now turned into an elegy, a younger poet’s homage to his Master.
This book has been ever a favourite with Bengali readers, and constitutes an invaluable addition to the study of Tagore and his life.
Buddhadeva Bose (1908–1974) is a major Bengali writer of the twentieth century, the most multi-talented amongst those belonging to what is for convenience termed the ‘post-Tagore’ period. Like Rabindranath Tagore he was a versatile writer, comfortable in every literary genre. A brilliant poet, he also wrote novels, short stories, plays in both prose and verse, and non-fictional prose such as travelogues, memoirs, and literary essays. He was also an editorpublisher, a translator, a writer for children, and a consummate critic.
(from Selected Poems of Buddhadeva Bose,
by Ketaki Kushari Dyson)
The translator Nandini Gupta is a Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. Her translations of Bengali poems have appeared in anthologies of Bengali poetry and magazines such as the Oxford Anthology of Bengali Literature, Parabaas, Two Lines, Chandrabhaga Etc.