Of kids & literary festivals

I had been to a well-organized Bengaluru Poetry Festival today at The Leela Palace. While trying to take in the sights and get over the joy of soaking in words and more words as poets read out their verses in soulful tones, I looked around at the audience.

Among the celebrities I counted, Perumal Murugan the writer of One Part Woman and ran into my brother’s friend, Amit Ranjan, whose recital of  his poem, Hesaraghatta Bar, was quite the highlight and saw Mr. Vishal Bharadwaj from a distance.  Running into a fellow toastmaster is always a pleasure, so it was to catch up with the energetic Prabhu Punk, who freely and easily shared his variety of creative interests and how he keeps up at them.

I realized how little acquainted I am with the current literary scene in India. How little I know! How much more there is!

While the upmarket and elite audience behaved appropriately encouraging the literary talents by applauding and crying out a ‘bravo’ in between, it was sad to see that they were only a handful of children at the venue.

I wondered why we parents think that it is not important to expose children to events like painting exhibitions, literary festivals and art expos. Why do we assume that our children are only interested in gaming consoles or visit to the malls?

If  we expose our children to the variety of creative expressions that are available, they will grow up to appreciate them.

Yes,I know it is a task and a tough one too, because these kinds of events are labelled as ‘boring’ even by those who have never turned up at even one such.

Perhaps even on weekends our kids are engaged in completion of home assignments or preparation for tests and have little time to spare.

May be we still think of creative pursuits as frivolous as opposed to the more serious study of ‘science’ and ‘math’.

The world, however, is changing rapidly and engaging in creative pursuits of some sort will help the kid find ways to express himself and even handle the pressures of student life or work life later in his life.

Art and literature help kids broaden their thinking and find ways to release accumulated stress.

A friend of mine recently told me of how she took her kids to the theatre and how appreciative they were of the experience.

Well, kudos to the thoughtful mother!

Do tag your kid along, if you can get more of your child’s friends to join, that’s even better, give them a taste of the variety of creative expressions, be it music, art or literature and see how they blossom into better human beings. You never know, you might just have kindled a spark in him.

Also art precedes science, so they say!

 

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