Unlike many famous rivers, Damodar has hardly been documented pictorially. Both the culture and the landscape that evolved around the banks of this river have also largely remained beneath the radar of mainstream media.
However, there is a kaleidoscope of great stories around Damodar where great floods, intriguing legends, eons of geological evolution, and human civilization merge together. From this cauldron, over course of time, the river has woven out its own stories. Stories that are nested within its geographical and natural contours and yet stories that eventually spin beyond their origins.
This book is a visual narrative of how these diverse, fragmented, and often unexplored stories have evolved over time, metamorphosed, and eventually created a chronicle of the river.
“Water, our most vital gift of nature for all living species, including us, is in a precarious state of abuse across our planet. Having spent much time in India working on water-related issues, Bhaskar's visual depth of this crisis is a weighted tome of our time. A calling, for all of us, into our need to pay attention. In what we do to our earth, ourselves, on the only place we can live. Earth.”—John Stanmeyer
A mighty chronicle! Leafing through these informative and visually arresting pages, I thought of a poem by Langston Hughes that ends thus:
I've known rivers:
Ancient, dusky rivers.
My soul has grown deep like the rivers
—Gabriel Rosenstock, Irish poet, playwright, haikuist, tankaist, essayist, and author-translator of over 200 books, Member Aosdána (Irish academy of arts & letters