In Memory of Questions

Rasika Jayakody

This poem was first published in June 2012. A comment by a reader urged me to post it again. I read it this morning…

Today you asked too many questions,

on ailment of love and unguent,

on lingering and moving away,

on promises, broken and to be made.


for which

I did not have many answers.

I forgot,

the pragmatism of leaving,

the knavish art of moving,

the forgetful lessons of passing.


But I tried to weave a smile

with an open bracket and a colon.


You spoke of dramas

that need to be ended,

I spoke of scripts

which are yet to be started.


and, the utterance

“Love me. But don’t express.”


I remembered a glass that seemed empty

because it was full only of pure water.


Then there was a moment…

the moment of moonlight

in angelic eyes,

the moment of silence between

mama yannam and gihin enna.*

*mama yannam, gihin enna are colloquial parting phrases meaning ‘I’ll be going then’ and ‘au revoir or ‘go now and return’ for non Sinhala-speakers.

Rasika Jayakody is a journalist who is presently working at the Ceylon Today newspaper in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He is a poet as well as a political correspondent who has years of experience in journalism. His poetry is more or less based on love, humanity and politics.

Armoured trishaw book banned


Armoured Trishaws – three wheeled Light Armoured Infantry Close Support Vehicle (LAICSV) — are the most recognisable icon of the Sri Lankan wars. These ungainly yet lethally nimble vehicles were instrumental in decisively ending the conflict. Military analysts have labelled them the “most significant paradigm shift in ground warfare since the tank”. Yet Lucian Hergie’s ground breaking book about their rise, “Scorpions of Paradise; the Role of Light Armoured Infantry Close Support Vehicles in the Sri Lankan War” (Lavanthian Global Press) is about to be banned.

The INGO directing reconstruction efforts, the Centre for Peace Implementation, has labelled the book “a threat to peace, stability and reconciliation”. It has taken the unprecedented step of instructing the newly elected post war federal government to ban the book. According to analyst Goliath White, “The book opens too many wounds and unpalatable facts too soon”.

How a book on a piece of military technology could inflame such a harsh response is surprising. The root of the controversy is that the book goes beyond its brief of documenting the history of a piece of military hardware. The mammoth two volume work stands to become the first in-depth and definitive historical analysis of the war in general and the siege of Colombo in particular. Its narrative is supported by a volume of verifiable primary sources included as a digital media database. Yet it is officially marketed to a non academic audience. The combination according to Mr. White, makes the book a political Pandora’s box of bad memories for the governing coalition.

Read More…

iSrilankan Disclaimer: If you think you have missed something important like “when did CMB go under siege” or you are about to believe in the Scorpions of Paradise ….relax and read the writing of Cerno , a perfect read for the times as well as being a rare good piece of writing. Await more from this space and no, I don’t have a clue as to who Cerno is !!



Shehan Karunatilaka wins the 2012 Commonwealth Prize



Shehan Karunatillake wins 2012 Commonwealth Book Prize. Congratulations! Proud of you and of all Sri Lankan authors out there !

“Two major achievements are always identified with Pradeep: He is the person who took a pitch called “the Chinaman” to new heights, a left-handed pitch, a “googly,” which looks as if it will break INTO a right-handed batter on the bounce, but breaks AWAY instead. His other achievement involves a double bounce as it comes in on the batsman, illegal in some games but practiced unofficially”.



Read the announcement and Mary Whipple’s Review.


A cricket ball, photographed by CHI/Ritesh Uttamchandani/Rex Features appears on
Portrait of author from Flickr collection.

Sinhala Blues from Ajith Kumarasiri

DBS JEYARAJ: “Hey Geneva” is a song performed by musician-singer-composer Ajith Kumarasiri at his live concert”No More” at Punchi theatre in Borella on March 31st 2012.

It is now featured on You Tube.

It was Dr.Dayan Jayatilleka, Sri Lanka ’s former Ambassador to the UN in Geneva who informed me first about “Hey Geneva”. Dayan who is currently our envoy to Paris describes it as “Sinhala Blues or the Blues in Sinhala” and hails it as the birth of a new genre. [Read more…]

Wishing you a Happy New Year in Colour !



V. P. VASUHAN, Paris : Artist

Born: Alaveddy










Were you at the Galle Literary Festival 2012?

A photoessay by Gary Paramanathan
A walk through the 2012 Galle Literary Festival from the perspective of a middle-of-the-road reader, and a bit of gossiper. [Read more…]

Please let us know of special Srilankan events around the world !


WHAT’S ON : It’s time to look around the world at the diverse, oomphy events that draw iSrilankans together in creative spaces. Who’s doing it and why is very important. We would like to hear more and give your work and events a shout-out.

[Read more…]