It is a tree that is green at all times of the year. But it bears fruit in the height of summer. The hotter it is, the sweeter it becomes. And, it seems we humans cannot have enough of this juicy, fleshy fruit, for there are almost 1000 varieties of this king of fruits around the world to please our tongues and eyes.
It could be round, almost like a ball, or it could be oval in shape, kidney shaped or just long and thin....
Sparrows [Illustration by Sudheer Nath] Sparrows on the mango tree
Sparrows on the grass
Sparrows on the windowsill
And on my looking glass!
Sparrows on the gravel path
And on the garden chair
Sparrows by the lily-pool
You find them everywhere!
(C) Swapna Dutta
Did you know that in India, mango orchards cover roughly 33 percent (1.08 million hectares) of the total area under fruit cultivation? In a hectare of land you can grow thousands of trees. And each tree bears, thousands of fruit! I will leave it to you to calculate how many mangoes the country produces! It’s no wonder that the subzi mandis (vegetable and fruit markets) get flooded with mangoes in summers.
Forget the fact that the country produces millions of mangoes, do you know how many varieties there are?...
Bhim the elephant and Hanoo the langur lived in the Brindavan Jungle. They were the best of friends. Their friendship had, however, started as a need-based one. You may well wonder what would an elephant and a langur need from each other!
Let me explain. Bhim who lived alone had grown quite old. He was extremely fond of fresh fruits. However, most of the time he was unable to get them. He was beaten by the more agile, younger and nimbler animals like Jeera the giraffe, Hiran the deer, Ghoda the horse and even Gadha the ass....
This is the story of a mango tree which did not want to spend its life rooted in one place. It wanted to travel, see the world and make new friends. Some excerpts from the first part of an exciting journey, when ‘Mad Mango’ learnt to walk.
Many monsoons had come and gone, but Mango still stood in the same place, his hands reaching out for the sky, his feet going deeper and deeper into the earth....
A mama and a baby monkey
Lived high up on a mango tree
The mama was kind
But the baby’s mind..
Dear! Oh Dear!
Oh! Dear, Dear Me.
One bright sunny day
The baby monkey ran away.
The mama despaired
Scratched all her hair
Dear! Oh Dear!
Oh! Dear, Dear Me
The Naughty Baby Monkey [Illustration by Anup Singh] The mama searched the forest through
Everywhere for baby Babloo.
Near the forest edge,...
This story took place many years ago… not in a kingdom, not in a village, but in a small town called Kalpanagar. This is not a story of a prince, nor a farmer, but of a young school boy named Mushir, who, quite to his surprise, became a very special person for the townsfolk of Kalpanagar.
Now we listen to the tale…. The summer of 1967 was blistering. The heat came in great waves and beat upon the flat tin roofs of the fifty or so houses in the small dusty town of Kalpanagar....
I have a friend with whom I argue a lot. No, that seems as if I am the one who does the arguing all the time. Half the time it is he who says something ridiculous, and then we start arguing!
There is one topic that we keep coming back to argue upon. I have stayed in one city all my life — in Delhi, the capital of India. He from childhood has lived in many places — cities as well as small towns across India....
By Mahasveta Devi; Translated by Lila Majumdar; Illustrations by Judhajit Sengupta, Published by National Book Trust, India
There was no other way but to take cover as early as possible. The village school would open as soon as it was light and Aunt would certainly send him to school today.
The mango tree was outside the house, a huge fajli mango tree. Ekkori’s grandmother used to plant good mango saplings year after year, but Grandfather uprooted them all....
A wandering youth once met Bholu, an illiterate villager, who knew how to perform a miracle. Everyday Bholu would go into the forest, stand under a mango tree and utter a charm. The tree would immediately become heavy with fruit. The next moment the mangoes would ripen and then they would fall to the ground. Bholu would collect them, eat some and distribute the rest among his neighbours who were poor.
Keshav the youth fell at Bholu’s feet, even though the latter belonged to a lower caste, and begged him to teach him the charm....
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