My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.
"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times
"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine
"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll
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27 January 2006
Love is so short, forgetting is so long
I think about you.
I think about you as-you-were, not as-you-are, which seem to be two different people.
I think about being met at the airport.
I think about a train to Goa, twelve hours late, and I was so sure you wouldn't be there. And my eyes already started to tear, as I looked around in panic for a PCO so I could call you and as I turned, I collided with your chest and you smelt familiar and you wrapped your arms around me and we just stood. And we rocked back and forth for a bit, while co-paasengers watched us, amused. And in the taxi, on the way back, at 3 am, you gave me a pad of stationary, with letters to me written on it.
I think about before we were dating, when we teetered close to dating. When we sat at Flavours, on the lawn, your knees behind my back, my fingers looking like they were running through the grass, but really caressing your ankles, thinking innocently, that no one noticed.
I think about checking my phone during my 2.40 to 3.30 class, and seeing daily smses, saying, "Hanging out at bus stop." And I'd run as soon as we were released, spray quick deodarant on my body, and you'd be at the college gate, waiting with crossword and lit cigarette and you'd take my backpack and my car keys and drive us to your house to eat cheese toast.
I think about how you used to run my back when I coughed, looking at me anxiously, murmuring, "Bas, bas" till I stopped, soothed.
I think about how we read together, in your room, with the A/C high. Or at my house, how our legs always tangled on the couch, and how after we fought for the remote, you always let me have it eventually.
I think about going to Dharamsala, and meeting a couple of your friends there and sleeping on the way back to Delhi, with my head on your lap, and how you carefully spread a shawl over my head and carefully rolled a joint, even though the bus was shaky you never spilt.
I think about that first office party you came to, and how you dropped a drunk colleague home, and how you spoke with everyone and made them love you and my heart swelled because I was with you.
I think about you, propped up on one elbow, watching me sleep and when I woke up and asked, "What?" you said you loved me.
And now, how dare I settle for anything less than what you gave me?