Photo story: Kolkata by the dark

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Home » Photo story » Photo story: Kolkata by the dark

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As night approaches, the city lends itself to stories of the myriad kind. The known alleys, the ones that are too busy during the day, are now strewn with thrillers, romantics, memoirs, and fiction.
I walk along the sleepy bylanes when everything gets quiet. I pass by a single screen cinema hall that has outlived its life. There, a queue of labourers, drunkards and pot smokers, in line for a ticket to the night-show, jostle space with each other. 
An old man, his eyes glued to an advertisement of a theatre event taking place in the city.
I take a sneak peek at couples at the other end of the street, and more of them in the shadows. I’m curious if love in the shadows and desolate streets is as beautiful as love by sunrises and sunsets. 
The last bus lets out a mechanical whimper on way to its final destination for the day.
The yellow festive lights are still on. They look as part of some far ancient festival… some old book wrapped up in an unnoticed rack — adding a hint of nostalgia to the city air. 
There is a fabled idea that things move when no one looks at them. If one goes with the narrow bylanes that grow more lively at night — accompanied by its fellow traveler, the soothing breeze from the Ganges by its side — it seems that the two will guide the river to a place where the moon sits near the Jupiter when no one is looking around. 
The city got its name (as per mythical texts) from Shiva’s bereavement for his wife Sati, an avatar of Kali. 
The name Kalikata has numerous sources. According to some, it came up as the toe of Kali fell near the bank Hoogly after Shiva’s dance of fury. 
This city was born from tales of fiction, stories of gods. This city was born out of bereavement which in turn sets the stage for lunatics in the dark. A dark, which with all its sombreness, turns into a consoling mother.
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