Watering the Dead and the Unseen: Sumana Roy on Vanishing Nature
This Week from the Emergence Magazine Podcast
Emergence Magazine is an online publication with annual print edition exploring the threads connecting ecology, culture, and spirituality. As we experience the desecration of our lands and waters, the extinguishing of species, and a loss of sacred connection to the Earth, we look to emerging stories. Our podcast features exclusive interviews, narrated essays, stories and more.
At her home in Siliguri, India, writer, and poet Sumana Roy collects the trunks, roots, and branches of fallen trees and affectionately places them in the rooms of her house—admiring their life even in death. In this narrated essay, Sumana and her nephew debate whether the dead trunks can be revived by the element of water and reflect on the continuance of all that has vanished from our sight.
Sumana Roy is the author of How I Became a Tree, Missing: A Novel, Out of Syllabus: Poems, and My Mother’s Lover and Other Stories. Her poems, essays, and stories have been published in Granta, Guernica, Prairie Schooner, LARB, The Common, Catapult, The Journal of South Asian Studies, American Book Review, among other places. She is currently Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at Ashoka University, India.
Celia Jacobs is a Portland-born illustrator living and working in Los Angeles. She works in technicolor with a focus on nature, music, and social issues. Her clients include The New York Times, The New Yorker, Google, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Penguin, and more.