essays • stories • interviews • poetry • art
essays • stories
interviews • poetry • art

Meeting Shashi Deshpande

Meeting Shashi Deshpande

In December 2022 I made a special trip to India to meet with the contributors of Period Matters. Through the book I feel I have made lifelong friends.

I first read Shashi Deshpande’s work in the 1980s and there I found in one of her novels a description of menstruation. One of the characters, Saru, described how awful it was for her. I was surprised because menstruation was never talked about in those days, let alone appeared in fiction. The image stayed with me, and when I started thinking about Period Matters I knew Ms Deshpande had to be included in the book. I was fortunate that she agreed to write a chapter and it is the first in the book, Menstrual Matters.

We finally met after all these years and for me it was like a homecoming to meet a writer I truly love and admire for her crystal clear, bold writing. I love her essays, short stories and novels.

We spent the afternoon together and went for dinner. She was more wonderful than I imagined. A day I shall never forget.