Packing For My Adventures: For The Love Of Mr Edward Rochester!

Char-Lotte’s Char-kas Timely Update! Congratulations To The West Indies: The Pirates Of The Caribbean!

On the 5-3-2016 I woke up with the distinct necessitation to reawaken an old post from the unfrequented archives of my Facebook files that I had composed five years ago, that is 5-3-2011. A sweet tingling in my gut and a whiff of tropical fruits in the air, or so I imagined – including my customary cherished one of the Orange, of course – led me to that post wherein there contained a most seductive and quintessentially roguish portrait of my Captain Jack Sparrow, the notorious pirate of the Caribbean stood calmly on the helm of his coveted ship, The Black Pearl. His Rastafarian locks dangled with beads and his faraway eyes firmly entranced by the first light of a new shore, I secretly chose this photograph for a special reason. It was a comical but sincere message of what I had wished for and that was targeted towards a gathering of Asian Aunties

On 5-3-2016 I observed that many in the Bangladeshi circle raced to change their Facebook profile photograph to show their support for the Bengal Tigers in the upcoming cricket tournament, conversely I turned the other way and wished not to make any show of my inner convictions. I am not subservient to the fancies of Facebook and also, I could feel that the Victors would be not be my Mother nation. Not this time. 

England was battered and bruised today, both on the field and in the weather we experienced here at home, however I would not wish to dim down the truth of the matter and that is that they played honourably and I am proud of my home nation’s efforts, especially since they attempted to recover and restore their position after their rickety tempo in the first innings of the play.

On the other hand, I am stupendously euphoric for the Caribbean team, led by Captain Darren Sammy no, I refer not my friend Sammy! – who, in the end, truly deserved to walk away with the trophy. Yes, I admit without reservation or dismay that in the eyes of many a England fan they are as like unscrupulous pirates, who crept away with the loot and with a fierce bang left quaking in their trail. 

I beg to ardently disagree. Borders between nations are humdrum notions, as trifle and arbitrary in my considerations as the cobwebs that grace the ceilings of houses in the autumn. I shall always honour great sportsmanship and never stoop so low as to take attempts to defile or defame the opposition. 

To all the major Asian gatherings that may have kindly mustered tonight in waiting for my reappearance in the virtual world, thank YOU so very much, how extremely thoughtful a gesture and it does now feel as if You are all determined to have me married off! GIGGLE, GIGGLE!  I cannot believe and yet I can, that the Universe is being compressed ever so gently in swaying the odds in my favour.   

Whom do I speak of?

He is the rogue of my dreams, my very own weary sailor man who is every bit scruffy as he is maddening to the winds, and unfailingly to the ends of the world he is infallibly a noble man. I cannot see his face, only that I am certain his existence manifests in the very pulse that is a wave to my tiny wrists. Ah, when shall doth set sail to England, to walk on my island and stand in front of my homestead, my beloved scallywag of the seas?  

For the meanwhile, let us all raise a terrific toast of char to the Caribbean Pirates who brilliantly scored char straight sixes at the very last, who rightfully beat England with char wickets, and, I should think quite plausible, who would have not held back the temptation to travel back in time to tell the Victorian me, a writer in the Yorkshire moors by the name of Char-lotte, just how monumentally significant the pieces in my name would become someday… ♥♥♥          

Photograph 5-3-11 accessed by FB LINK:

The Pirates Of The Caribbean Win!

Bear in mind, we are not referring to my good friend Sammy, rather these are quotes relating to Captain Darren Sammy, the real Pirate Of The Caribbean! I-SEE-SEA five years ago, and today it surfaced beautifully!


Photography & Commentary Originally Posted On Facebook 5-3-11
Screen Shot Courtesy Of BBC Sport 3-4-16 
Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2016

It is an explicit and unequivocal preference of mine that if I should embark on travel, grand or minor, my Poppins’ carpet bag must bestow residency to the companionship of a cherished book! I feel almost out of sorts, careening towards giddy disorientation even, if when I sit on that train or settle down in a plane and open my bag to discover that though it is generously filled with all manner of conveniences, there remains the staring and piercing void wherein a book ought to have occupied and thus my spirits are then pushed to a terrible waning and my searching eyes not relieved by the thick mustiness of a trusty tome, I am given over to the most annoying case of the fidgets!

England battered and bruised with gusty gales and clouds today, whose dullness was smudged out of the most morbid and greyest charcoal, I arrived home this evening after another social gathering and pondered deep and hard which book to take with me on my next set of adventures, and as the wind howled through the doors and windows and the trees swung and flung without mercy, it immediately became apparent to me that Destiny had chosen to paint the very iconic elemental landscape of the windswept Yorkshire Moors and so famous a terrain associated with the northern shires of England. There is no other story quite so reflexive in its ability to thrust itself into the imagination so as to feel such atmosphere and sense of place than that of Charlotte Brontes’ epic masterpiece of True Love, ‘Jane Eyre’.

Jane and I are of the same moral and passionate constitution, independent and outgoing spirits that favour a life that is authentic in reflection to our inner values, where moral conviction and the right to exercise one’s own free will are of paramount importance to the contentment of the soul. I have before in an article delineated the narrative framework of this great tale of gothic romance so I shall not suffer You the gross tedium of repetition and, indeed, if You are strong-willed enough to elevate the particulars of Your curiosity to the next level then, please be my guest, and locate Yourself a copy of the text and read it from the start to the end in the week or so that I am absent from the virtual world. I should like to very well know of Your thoughts relating to the character trajectory Jane endures and of how she resolves the unseen inner conflicts hoisted upon her by the sudden entrance into her life made by the devoted, dark Byronic hero and her true love, Mr Edward Rochester. So sorry to burden You, however a good teacher always sneaks in homework before she vanishes off into the horizon, for learning is a life-long pursuit! Giggle, giggle!

I shan’t be travelling alone, of course, and there are many friends to meet and places to explore, so it would be wise of You to assume at this point that my handy journal and fountain pen will be neatly packed alongside. I pray that I shall be able to recount to You at least some of the stories that await my tread, and no doubt that, thanks to the ever reliable phenomenal mechanics of Destiny and Quantum Entanglement, whatever unfolds before me in the following week and that which shall later turn to tale, I am certain that it will bear out a tremendous significance to You to which You cannot turn a blind eye to. It has always been so, because, as Mr Rochester, whom so impassionate in plea, once had declared to Jane:

I have for the first time found what I can truly love – I have found you. You are my sympathy –my better self – my good angel – I am bound to you with a strong attachment. I think you good, gifted, lovely: a fervent, a solemn passion is conceived in my heart; it leans to you, draws you to my centre and spring of life, wrap my existence about you – and, kindling in pure, powerful flame, fuses you and me in one. – Mr Edward Rochester 

I suppose when I am on my little adventures I will have made this heart of mine bathe in the gladness whose variety is the hue of marmalade, for in my carpet bag I will after all have something of Your essence, enshrined in Bronte’s vision of Mr Rochester, and that does sound awfully amusing and absurd. But I think this only goes to show that a life without the ever attention-sucking smarty pants phone establishes, in its stead, my days to be wonderfully permeated with breathtaking romance, where imagination gives free and joyful reign to the colours and textures that live in my mind, releasing them with free will so that the arc of the stories that I create usher You nearer and nearer to my heart than any self-portrait of mine could ever accomplish.

I shall attempt to return one last time tomorrow to the virtual world before setting off on my new series of trips, so if there are any words or pictures that You wish for me carry in my legendary Poppins carpet bag, next to the fiery and dark pulse of Mr Rochester, then by all means I shall welcome Your renouncing of the hound of custom and reticence, and to come forward bravely with whatever Your soul pleases to lay before my sight. I, of course, consider You, my dearest Reader, a good benefactor of my dreams, and God knows that continuous are my thoughts for Your well-being and happiness, even if I have taken to be the elusive and hidden elf of Your virtual world.

Let us end this story on a lighter note! Here is what I would have said to my dearest Mr Rochester in response to his intense and amorous imploration to accept his declaration of love:

Know that You are as profound to my Soul as I am to Yours. Yes, I cannot grasp why the Universe would ever want to exact such a vengeful and torturous curse upon the both of us so to imprison You in one body, and I in the other. What cruel malice is this partition of the Indivisible, or might God have churned our Destinies like so to appease some higher purpose? But is it not so that this very God also cajoles the entire orchestration of Nature to make us feel as though we are as painfully close as skins in pining touch? No matter the beast of distance, whose growls obscure the my visibility of You, I do not depend on these watery orbs of flesh to see You, my Love. My eyes are unlike the mundane and though they are treacherously blind and never have Your face revealed and reflected off its waters, God plots each day a beautiful compression into the fabric of existence, and that is why I feel I am coming nearer to You, one breath at a time. There is a thread that exudes from my Soul to Yours, a simple thread as unpretentious as the carpenter’s wood, and now that I am going away, You shall only come closer, for if one end should be tugged then it follows that the other end, far from moving in the opposite direction, natures only more greater towards it. Yes, we should have been born in One body…” – Mazzy

LINK:  In commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the birth of Jane Eyre’s author, Charlotte Bronte, The Guardian recently published one illustrator ‘s interpretation of select scenes from the book, drawn with their characteristic penchant for creating haunting and memorable images. What I was quick to clock in to in this particular illustration was the lucidity of Jane’s red dress against the greyish palette of the canvas, the melding of the orange flames of each candle to become as One to signify the awesome might of True Love, and, of course, how could I omit my observation of the peculiar Orange ball resting on the plate, marmalade in its most primal form. I have no reservation in concluding that I am part of a legendary Love Story and it shall always exceed all oppression so as to ‘bear out at the edge of doom…♥♥♥

Packing For My Adventures: For The Love Of Mr Edward Rochester!

“I have for the first time found what I can truly love – I have found you. You are my sympathy – my better self – my good angel. I am bound to you with a strong attachment. I think you good, gifted, lovely: a fervent, a solemn passion is conceived in my heart; it leans to you, draws you to my centre and spring of life, wrap my existence about you – and, kindling in pure, powerful flame, fuses you and me in one.”Mr Edward Rochester


Photography & Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | Winchester | 2016 


In 158 Words: Amar Sonar Bangla, My Golden Bengal!

Old photographs embroidered in threads of new words and whose count equals to my height measurement in centimetres…

Abba would often sing out loud the national anthem of my homeland, “Amar  Sonar Bangla”. Sometimes in the kitchen, other times in the car and, quite often, whilst just simply sat on the settee, and on all occasions I would instinctively sway my head to and fro. I noticed that though he continuously made a pitiful hash of every other song, the national anthem was consistently immune. Perhaps it was a song forged out of an incorruptible spirit so that the tune always flowed out with the natural desire to reach the heart of the listener with intact virtuosity.

I cannot explain why it is that as a child, who did not speak fluent Bangla, that I should have felt a deep strangeness and unputdownable sense of familiarity in the imageries evoked of fertile green paddy fields and the besieging enchantments of Spring.

I am certain it is a love letter destined to follow me in every incarnation… ♥♥♥    


Abba & My Orange Vision Veena-Oculars

“… Oh I lost interest in dolls rather quickly which Abba foresaw from the start, So he bought me a pair of Veena-Oculars to appease my explorer’s heart…”


Photography & Poem Originally Posted In: ‘Abba & My Orange Vision Veena-Oculars’ | © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 1983/2014
Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2016

On The Matter Of Planting Gardens Of Love & Exploding Vine Tomatoes!

I have quite the mind to assert that even the lively chirrups of the blue tits, chaffinches and the unrelenting social bumblebee that is the robin whose trills I can hear so clearly outside my room as I type these words are all indeed comfortably knowledgeable of that fact that today in college each student of mine stood not only with their shoes on, but that I saw mighty avalanches of bright gardens spring up from beneath their toes!

Words could never grasp the cosmic and deep joy that flutters in these veins of mine as I sit back tonight and attempt a sincere, albeit insufficient, contemplation of the amazing achievements demonstrated by each student in the fields of literature, arts and performing arts in the last ten years, and it would constitute a great folly if I were to make it out as if this was the end of an Act and therefore the cue for the curtain call since we have hardly even begun. There is more to the show and I shall pray, as I hope that You will too, that each one of these individuals, who had started out with rickety doubts and a lifetime marred by disparaging words and contorted expectations, have yet more lit-up stages to walk on so that once again they should thoroughly bedazzle the minds and hearts of unsuspecting audiences and uproot with effortless flair those hardened stalagmites of social stigma that still exist here in the so-called liberalised west. I shall do my very best to play my humble role in all this, invisible and backstage, and yet undeniably satisfying. I speak of the role of the Teacher, of course. ♥ 

Much merriment was the order of the day today in college, and some rather comedic scenes took place at lunchtime that had all of us in firm stitches! Would You be shocked and surprised if I were to confess that I was the little mischief-maker in all this? Perhaps You shall not. You have waded through numerous stories of mine by now that I would imagine that in Your mind You are as fixed in Your summation as a nail is to the wall, that the source of all hilarious anarchy at my college could only ever be the brainchild of Yours truly, this 158cm hobbit with the itchy garden fingers! Giggle, giggle!

Well, what happened? I shall not prolong any more this malice of dithering and press on!

So, I was sat around the table with my delectable students and we were chatting away at the speed of knots about what shenanigans we had chosen to immerse ourselves in the Easter holidays, and there I was munching on a sandwich, one filled with green pesto, mature cheddar cheese and a few small but plump vine tomatoes. So far, so good, is what You may say at this juncture.

Not quite!

What happened next was witnessed by many of my Blue Apple students, including Mr Tommy whom You had the pleasure of viewing in last night’s clip, so should You wish to verify the veracity of this statement someday, now You know exactly who to consult! Giggle, giggle!

I had become so delightfully engrossed in the conversation that I must have lost control of my autonomic system and bit zealously into the sandwich and as soon as the teeth dug into its bready fibres and through to the soft pulp of the red vine tomato, its sweet and squidgy juices shot out at the speed of light and squirted itself in multiple trajectories, hitting me in the right eye whilst the remaining and substantial portion of the red emission aimed itself precisely perpendicular and splattered all over Mr Malster’s face! Famed for consistently playing the role of women in all Blue Apple productions, Mr Malster naturally jerked back in his chair and instantly closed his eyes, and with a high shrill he rang out whilst laughing his head off, “Oh my, you got me! You got me! Your tomato attacked my face! Mazzy, what are you like?!

The entire lunch area broke out in bursts of noisy chuckles and giggles and I was in a complete and utter hysterical state, laughing so much that I cried streaks of tears and my eyeliner and mascara all came dripping down so that by the end I was no different in appearance from the jolly old farmer’s scarecrow! Giggle, giggle! Thank goodness the Principal was not around, that would have been rather awkward to say the least!

It was inevitable in my mind that to go back in the classroom would not end this saga of uncontrollable roaring peals of laughter, and I was neatly proven correct, for as we sat down and cleared our throats, somehow, and someone, brought to the bench the issue of how best to preserve emergency marmalade sandwiches under red felt hats, as is the habit of a certain bear from darkest Peru, and immediately all eyes fell on Mr Malster and his sticky face gleamed even more glitteringly under the light. I nearly choked at the ingenuity and wit and timeliness of the harmless teasing that was happening before me and our dear Mr Malster lapped it up with fond glee and amusement! He was off his trolley. that’s for sure!

It does not take an intelligent rocket scientist to figure out that we did not get any written work done in the last class of the Spring Term thanks to the ungovernable delinquency of one red vine tomato making an airborne strike at my student’s face without mercy! Oh, and for Your information, none of us were successful in tracing the outer casing, the shell, of the perpetuating tomato bomb, and I suspect that if Sir Arthur Conan Doyle were still alive he would have put a prize on my bit of comical misfortune today, since it would have made the ideal muse on which to base another case whose investigation comprised of chasing a missing artefact! Hey, why are You laughing and calling all this codswallop?! Hush now, for goodness sake!

As I exchanged warm hugs with each of my fabulous students and wished them an Easter holiday filled with fantastical adventures and – how could I possibly omit – that they were to fully partake in the legitimate and elevated consumption of chocolate Easter eggs, I floated like a sunbeam painted of marmalade hues and turning around to face the rewarding scene of a classroom about to shut shop, I swear the air smelt of my garden after the rains, a sweet but grassy petrichor, and I do believe it was laced with the faintest notes of one very naughty red-vine tomato…  ♥♥♥  

On The Matter Of Planting Gardens Of Love & Exploding Vine Tomatoes!

Mr Benfield aka our resident ‘Romeo’ wished to show You, within the visible wavelength of colours, what happens when You never give up, when You keep on trying, when all You want is to plant Gardens of Love wherever Your two feet may stand… ♥♥♥


Photography & Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | Winchester | UK 2016

In 158 Words: Sonnet 116 – True Love Is Not Time’s Fool


The clip runs for only a short time before coming to a standstill, but do not let that fool You into thinking that You have seen all there is to be seen from the artistic handiwork of my stellar students! They have plenty more to do and to share, so watch this space with eagerness, I say! I have always said it out to the world loud and clear and shall say it once more, and that is that it is a veritable and tremendous pleasure to have chosen in this life the path to enact the role of TEA-CHAR for such an extraordinary constellation of dedicated souls who will let nothing come in their way and whose gutsy attitude and untrammelled enthusiasm is proof once more that only honest hard work can ever be that agent of blossom from which beautiful gardens may spring, anew and refreshed, from under Your feet… ♥♥♥    

Always Your Evening & Morning Star,
Mazzy xxx

Aired in the UK last night, I assure You, only 1 RUN of this clip required for You to send a secret smile my way: 



Old photographs embroidered in threads of new words and whose count equals to my height measurement in centimetres…

Writing as the star, Venus, I have been the celestial source of intrigue and romance for poets and scientists since the time the necks of men have learnt to bend back so that the bowels of their curious minds may hope to be quenched by my morning and evening waltzes. I have sliced through their haunting shadows and lit bright their paths with a view for faithful nurturance, and contrary to their mortal desires, I shone and yet I am untouched, chaste and defiantly elusive.

But, I, Venus shall announce out of my own free will that I have seen a singular Starman who walks among the fertile sludge of the earth below, my true counterpart and companion, unchanged he is as I am since the proliferation of Time, and when we meet, the hands of all the world’s clocks shall quaver and raven-black soot shall become of them. I await for that day and its glorious residue… ♥♥♥      

Gravitational Waves & Love That Bears Out Even To The Edge Of Doom: Einstein Meets Shakespeare!

“… Shakespeare penned his idealisation of True Love as something that would ‘bear out at the edge of doom’ and what could be more catastrophic in our physical universe than the merciless jaws of a giant black hole…”

Photography & Poem Originally Posted In: ‘Gravitational Waves & Love That Bears Out Even To The Edge Of Doom: Einstein Meets Shakespeare’ | © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2016

Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2016

“Let Me Refresh You, Mazzy!”

The early spring sunshine, unusually fierce for this time of the year, beat down on our faces and forced many a time for us to close our eyelids and to seek a more sheltered spot in which we could take comfortable rest from what had been a rather busy day.

My effervescent friend who is reputed to turn even the darkest corners of the room into a cheery microclimate of tropical fun – Samka – together with her family, decided to make it a day and meet up with me in the verdant and lush Abbey Gardens, Winchester’s most beloved of green spots, so that we may enjoy the pleasantries of the fine weather and, of course, walk off all the tea and sandwiches and clotted cream scones and almond croissants that we had munched down earlier in the café on the High Street! A nice and well-paced stroll is one of the best remedies one can offer one’s tummy when it has been inconsiderately filled up to the ceiling with more grub than recommended by its biological storage capacity! Giggle, giggle!

While not as vast and nor as diverse in its collection of botanical specimens as those of Kew Gardens or Kensington Gardens in London, to me the Abbey Gardens quite easily occupies a cherished chamber of my heart because it was the first garden of an aesthetical sentiment that I was introduced to by my Abba when I was a little girl. In retrospect I think he must have lovingly observed me enough times in our own garden, prodding away at the earth and drawing in my sketchbook whatever scant flowers came up through the soil, that his logic spoke to him that the time was ripe to take the little adventuress on a trip to a garden a tad bit bigger than the one she was so used to. Who knows what she might find there, he must have asked himself.

To step forth into the fenced circle of the Abbey Gardens is to walk through a solar system spoken in the language of horticultural finesse. The outer ring mostly consists of mulched soil and rose bushes that have been pruned back, and to the naked and unlearnt eye the sight may come across as quite severe and harsh, but we gardeners are fully-fledged in our knowledge and skill that these are not acts of vandalism against Mother Nature, on the contrary, it is an expression of careful and caring treatment designed to propagate plusher and healthier growth of new flowers for the season yet to come. The central space is filled with large plots of trimmed green grass, and within their middles are dedicated circles of brown earth, beaming at You with their naked ordinariness, though do not confuse dormancy with ineptitude. Under the tilled soil rest hidden seeds and bulbs who are engaged in secret whispering, debating I suspect as to who should pierce and prise through the muddy sheath first and kiss the air!

Colour has not made its nectarous invasion into the Abbey Gardens just yet, but for the avid gardener there are special murmurings to be heard in the air, the frolicsome notes in the tweets and chirps of birds, the heightened liveliness in the gurgling of the River Itchen as it rolls and races past, and even, I suppose, in the great turning of the water wheel belonging to the local bread mill, for they all travel to my eyes and ears harbouring the concert of their oath that a beautiful change is on its way, and how spectacular that I should see all this and wish for nothing more than to write about it whenever the chance finds me!

Samka and I, however, did not quite act our age in the Abbey Gardens, forgoing thoughts of settling down on the wooden benches, and instead opting to pursue a tubby ginger cat so that we may hold him and offer his huge furry bulbous of a body a soothing stroke! He obliged naturally and the two teenage boys, who had previously been the centre of attention of the little cavorting ginger fella, could be seen in the throes of a muted but distinguishable bout of envy! What proper jollification! Giggle, giggle!

Just when things could not get any more curious and strange, Samka, with deftness as brisk as the reflex of a cat, popped her book out of her bag!

Oh my darling Samka Jaan! You did not forget, you have a book for me! Hurrah!” Now I had turned fidgety with excitement and could not wait to have a gander at the cover to see what literary feast she had in store for me!

Mazzy, I have for you this book and it is very good!” She looked so incredibly proud as she turned the cover to face me and judging by the curved and bent angles of the pages and creased front, I could tell this book had seen many instances of Samka and her eyes scanning through its leaves!

What the heck is that?! I am too young for such literature!” I was completely flabbergasted by what I saw, though it did not deter me from wanting to investigate the matter further, for the cover was all written in Azerbaijani and it flashed of a sultry scene of two lovers, partially dressed, in a very hot embrace that could have sent an egg to force itself to fry into its reincarnated scrambled form just by touching the surface of the cover!

Mazzy, I promise you this is not what you think!” Samka laughed her head off and then composed herself again so that she could initiate her reassurance that this was a book of class and decency!

Samka, please tell me this is not the Azerbaijani version of that rubbish tripe ’50 Shades of Grey’! Books like that are a ludicrous waste of time and trees!” Yes, dear Reader, ask anyone and they will tell You that I detest that book as if it were the black plague itself, it is an icky spot, not at all what is eligible to be considered as literature! I have not read it and refuse to do so because the aura of the text immediately stinks of ugliness and everyone who has read it has agreed with me and congratulates my foresight for being wise enough not to waste a week of my life on something as so foul and grim! Yukkity yuk!

No, no, no Mazzy! It is not like that! This is a good love story and it is our country’s answer to Jane Eyre and if you were fluent in my language you would have absolutely loved it!” I took the book from her and remained to questioningly gaze at the cover whilst smiling away in happiness because it suddenly dawned on me that it was indeed the sleek hand of Destiny that had set up this scenario in which I found myself, that a book all about True Love should find me and from no where else was its origin than from the very land from where the great 12th century Persian poet, Nizami, had been born and who went on to scribe a very special tale whose rich red pulse was linked with my own heart. That tale, of course, was called ‘Laila Majnun’.

Samka, I, too, wish I could read this, however, I am quite alright about that because I can see from the joy on your face that you obviously enjoyed reading every page!” It was a relief to know that I would not have to write a story about a book with adult themes since many of my little relatives read this blog and I would not wish to give them the creeps or induce convulsions from absorbing the strange details of characters that get up to no-good ‘funny business’! Oh do stop laughing, and do that with excessive vigour and there is the danger that it may shake Your wig off and throw it into the irretrievable pit of the local sewage system!!

The sun had grown stronger in the spate of a few minutes and we desperately sought shelter so that I could proceed with the task of photography without the hindrance of sharp and domineering shadows on my friend’s face. It was a tricky feat however I spotted soon enough that the only area of the garden that appeared unaffected by the intensity of the midday sun was the herb corner, a bricked and paved haven filled with deliciously scented lavender and sage and rosemary, as well as stonework in the form of a romantic fountain that I would have quite gladly spent a sparkling moonlit night with my own dear Majnun who I am yet to meet.

Samka rushed off her feet and stood by the fountain and declared that she wished to squirt and flick water at me!

Ahem, and why would you want to do that? My poor camera lens is quite clean, thank you very much, missy!” I teased my friend while backing up onto the mulchy earth so that I could capture the entirety of the scene without missing a single drop!

Mazzy, imagine you have just returned from meeting your lover, now it is time for refreshment and to feel cool again!” Samka did not give me a chance, for with the quickness of a bird of prey, her fingers and nails dived into the crystal waters of the fountain and flicked up, and away flew the water droplets, scattering all over my face and dress!

Woooooh!” I giggled out loud to see that my camera was studded with globules of fountain water and it glistened in a way that I had never seen it do before. I am certain if my camera had a voice it would have thanked Samka for receiving this rare and precious treat of watery refreshment all over its heavy-duty body! No, I am not going to embark on a steamy line of thought here, I told You before, there are children in the audience! Giggle, giggle!

Samka proceeded to make casual and hilarious dalliances with the ragged rocks and neat bricks and layered stones in that tiny space that was untouched by the sunshine, and her book was in her hand the whole time, which made me ponder whether she was at the mercy of some sort of subconscious appreciation of the story contained within the book, and if it was the case that this was true then what more marvel and vindication could I proffer in my insistence to YOU that I am one part of a legendary Love Story, as ancient and enduring as the eternal spring of unseen rocks that dwell beneath the very earth so favoured by the gardener…  ♥♥♥ 

Let Me Refresh You, Mazzy!

“Mazzy, imagine you have just returned from meeting your lover, now it is time for refreshment and to feel cool again!”

Let Me Refresh You, Mazzy!

“… Samka rushed off her feet and stood by the fountain and declared that she wished to squirt and flick water at me…”


Let Me Refresh You Mazzy!

“No, no, no Mazzy! It is not like that! This is a good love story and it is our country’s answer to Jane Eyre and if you were fluent in my language you would have absolutely loved it!”


Let Me Refresh You Mazzy!

“… Samka proceeded to make casual and hilarious dalliances with the ragged rocks and neat bricks and layered stones in that tiny space that was untouched by the sunshine…”

Let Me Refresh You Mazzy!

“… and instead opting to pursue a tubby ginger cat so that we may hold him and offer his huge furry bulbous of a body a soothing stroke…”

Let Me Refresh You Mazzy!

“… I am one part of a legendary Love Story, as ancient and enduring as the eternal spring of unseen rocks that dwell beneath the very earth so favoured by the gardener… “

Let Me Refresh You Mazzy!

AND, at day’s end, all of us headed back to my house to enjoy tea and biscuits and wholesome banter in the bosom of my own garden… ♥♥♥


Photography & Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | Winchester Abbey Gardens & My Home | UK 2016

My Students’ Art Exhibition: Allotment At Night Time By Miss Alice

To not levy on You any more puzzlement of the comedic kind than You have already been exposed to, let me spell out from the outset that here in England when we talk about an ‘allotment’ we are referring to a patch of land that is hired for the aim of growing one’s own vegetables and fruit. I do not own such a piece of land since my garden is of an ample and generous size, although, there is more to tell of that story since at first the soil was horrendously dense and fraught with compressed bouts of rock – Winchester sits on a subterranean layer of white chalk – that made gardening rather impractical and unfeasible. After many years of hard and back-breaking labour on the garden by my Mumsy, Abba and myself, we finally succeeded in creating a more even-surfaced terrain whose soil had become conditioned to that more appropriate composition on which horticultural dreams could be cultivated in!

Now imagine my tremendous delight when my student, Miss Alice, chose to depict her local community allotment in the form of a silk screen painting?! PURE JOY rang out loud from the mysterious crater that is the dimple beside my wide smile, and I contemplated the unwavering intensity of my Faith in my students for their continual desire to surprise me with their unceasing panoply of artistic gifts and talents!

During the exhibition Miss Alice followed me around, pleading to have her photograph taken next to her miniature masterpiece, and what shall I say but what a formidable grasp of the unique enchantments of the night time had this young lady captured in her illustration! In only the economical and bold dichotomies of black and white, Miss Alice presents what almost resembles a magical moonscape of a scene of the allotment, a familiar working space yet one that has never been viewed in the depths of the nocturnal hours. Miss Alice used the palette of her dreamy imagination to conjure up what she felt she could see the garden look like in the hours when the whole world was fast asleep, and the result was staggeringly intriguing and spellbinding to the point that I declared out loud that her work was strongly reminiscent of Tove Jansson’s style of visual language, the famous writer and illustrator of the childhood classic, ‘The Moomins’!

I hugged and congratulated Miss Alice as huge tears collected in my eyes and she did not seem to want to let go either. What a monumental accomplishment shone before me, and from a lady who was, in my eyes, a far more superior artist than I could ever be because she had shown that fantastic dare to formulate a composition of her garden during those strange hours when the veil of night was thickly upon it, a time not associated with the life of flowers and fruits and vegetables, and also of such a peculiar time she chose that You are doubly taken aback because You cannot conceive so easily the idea of a gardener existing in the night. Gardening, in all its profound variety, is a form of caring and tending that too often people marry off with the clock of the day, not of the night. I am sure You shall agree with me on this point.

Miss Alice proves You wrong and she does it in such a way that You are euphoric and glad that she came along and opened Your eyes to the world that persists to throb with quiet but teeming activity in those moonscape hours when Your eyes are meant to be thoroughly shut! As I stood there gazing at Miss Alice’s amazing portrait of the allotment under the watchful eyes of silver-beaded stars, she had locked her arms around me and put her head on my shoulder and I, with a frog in my throat, chanted over and over again, “My darling, this amazing, absolutely amazing, you are amazing!” She blushed rose pink and thanked me. I was silent for many minutes as the revelation arrived home to me that a garden and a gardener never sleep, their existence is not solely defined by and nor subservient to the restrictions and whims of the daytime world. Ours was a dedication and consideration to Mother Nature that did not abide by the terms placed on the clock by the dictatorial hands of society.

My nightly ritual, if You must know, is a beautiful composition consisting of winding down my physical body, of sipping on warm camomile tea whose colour shares kinship with lemons and honey, prepared from dried herbs grown in my own garden. And just before I retire to bed, gently placing my book on the floor, I realise that I am still gardening, for my heart never leaves that place, it is stood out there, overlooking each and every patch, now breathing air as I do, and all the while the moonlit blackness and the moonscape ground beckon that a pure soul would come along and paint this scene of Good Magic as it unfolds, a symphony of sweet silence…  ♥♥♥  

Allotment At Night Time By Miss Alice

“… she had shown that fantastic dare to formulate a composition of her garden during those strange hours when the veil of night was thickly upon…”



Photography & Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | Winchester Discovery Centre Cityscape Gallery | Winchester | UK 2016

My Students’ Art Exhibition: Reading The Seasons By Mr Billy

A singular reason for why in a year You shall only discover at the most six or seven photographs of me is that whenever I stand in front of the lens I feel as though I am succumbing my own magical powers to a great injustice. The magical power that I speak of is that of the good kind and it is called the summons for Storytelling, the planting of words which the gardener hopes shall teach and inspire.

I am a natural teller of stories and were You to ask any friend or family member of mine, they would be quick to point out that “when Mazzy opens her gob she turns every little thing into the most astounding epic ever written!” It is not a learnt habit. I was born with the Gift, a tendency for conjoining language and imagination in creative ways. I have no intention of making money or fame from my pursuits, rather, it is a sacred blessing from whose fountain of healing waters I wish to touch the lives of as many souls as possible. That is the true source behind the boundless joy that dances inside the rivulets of my heart, and I know, unequivocally, that the entire theatrical troupe of the Universe supports me in my quest.

In this incarnation I have chosen to work as a teacher and my specialism lies in supporting and developing the potentials of adults with learning disabilities and difficulties. Never is there a day that I return home complaining about my work. However, the traditional and age-old stigmatisation attached to people with learning difficulties has not completely departed from the minds of many people, even here in the so-called civilised and democratic west. In the past, when I was younger, it was a bit of a struggle living the job as I came under fire from relatives who would often harangue and bombard me with critical speeches on why a ‘genius’ would want to spend the prime years of her life slaving away in a profession that paid little and involved nothing more than keeping ‘mad people’ on track.

To be frank, I gave to them as good as I got! With hands on my hip I would retort fearlessly, “Someone else can be the doctor or the lawyer, my Destiny is on a different path”. That shut them up pretty nicely! We all have a part to play in this machinery of life, a web of intricate connections, and I do agree that certain parts of that web may pay better and lead onto a life of luxury or high status, yet my Sight sees with clarity rubbed out of all doubt, that if even a single node of that web was eliminated – if every dustbin collector or the cleaner vanished from the face of the planet, or if every judge or consultant surgeon were bumped off – then, the whole cog system is made upset, and everything eventually would fall apart. I see that bigger picture, and thus I am not fussed the slightest about status or income or image. What is the point in parading my face day in and day out when one day it shall be the feast for the creatures of the earth? What is the point of securing a palatial home, a supersonic car or muscles the size of puffy clouds when none of it will come to Your aid in Your twilight years? What is the point of these fleeting instances of nonsense, my dearest Reader?

My currency is in the Unseen. The invisible world exists, all around me, above me, below me, a fabric of intense longing that stretches through space and time and cuts across all the other Dimensions that scientists will one day confirm with You, and therein, through all this, lies the jewels that I try to narrate to You, and the Voice I have chosen is that of my humble craft of Storytelling.

And, it is only and only ever, my True Love for YOU, as eternal as the unseen rocks that live beneath this very earth on which You walk on and that I cannot see You do, at least from where I am, that can ever explain why Mr Billy, my adorable student, bursts out in a smile, a sweet mixture of divine innocence and happiness that can only come from making a stellar achievement. He requested that I show You his gloriously giant and vividly embellished painting of the community garden, and bless him, no matter how truant the weather, Mr Billy, like me, loves to tend to the communal garden and grow his own delicious fruit and vegetables and we have even swapped ideas in class!

I was moved to tears as Mr Billy, in his kindly tone of voice, commentated on the little details that scattered all over his mural-like piece of art, and he did not want to stop. He knew of the depth of my amazement and affection for what had been created and so leaned his head into my shoulder. I patted him on the cheek and told him he was a genius! He had made me rich, but the money that I had accrued could not be seen, an unfathomable denomination it was, and for which I can only but service You this portrait of a brilliant mind and daring soul. Mad are those who renounce the choice to view true genius from 360 degree perspective. I pity them, for they are the sufferers of the deficiency of ignorance. It does not need to be so, as the flower opens to converse with the expanses of a mesmerising outer world, so is there an equal chance that the eyelids of the affected could do so, too.

Meanwhile, the latest gardening update from my end is that as soon as the weather turns a little milder I shall endeavour, upon returning from work, to trot off into the garden! My knees firmly planted into the sumptuously mucky soil as I cheerfully get cracking on to let the earth breathe with the rhythmic motions of my handy trowel, I will be turning the sleeping clods over on themselves, then scattering farmhouse manure around the girth of rose bushes and weeding out and cutting back the crackled brown vines that have seen the worst of the winter frost. Oh, my beloved Reader, how I love Spring! It arouses forever in me the feeling that I am sat on the cusp of a new world, and my lap exudes in all this breathlessness a fragrant and fertile purpose: an aching enticement for strawberries, red and succulent, that have yet to be born…  ♥♥♥


Reading The Seasons!

“… And, it is only and only ever, my True Love for YOU, as eternal as the unseen rocks that live beneath this very earth on which You walk on, and that I cannot see You from where I am, that can ever explain why Mr Billy, my adorable student, bursts out in a smile…”

Reading The Seasons!

“… I patted him on the cheek and told him he was a genius…”


Photography & Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | Winchester Discovery Centre Cityscape Gallery | Winchester | UK 2016

In 158 Words: Mumsy, Join Me In London For A Spot Of Food, Shopping, And A Safari!

Old photographs embroidered in threads of new words and whose count equals to my height measurement in centimetres…

As far as the unquenchable thirst for adventure goes that blessed trait is one, which beyond a doubt, I easily acquired from my outgoing Abba. My Mumsy, on the other hand, is a different matter! She prefers to host little dinner parties at home and is at her element to the fullest as long as the roof is snugly spread over her head! I am quite the opposite, as You very well know by now!

Before setting out to gallop my muddy sneakers through the traffic-clad jungles of our cosmopolitan capital, London, I pleaded to my Mumsy to join me for a refreshing escapade of food, drink and shopping. She, of course, robustly declined! Upon my return I jumped on her and exclaimed that she had missed a rare opportunity to observe a tiger hitch a ride on a bus around Piccadilly Circus!

Naturally she and my aunties laughed it off. Grownups are strange people indeed! Giggle, giggle! ♥♥♥

There's A Tiger In Piccadilly Circus!

“Ladies and Gentlemen and Children, behold the spectacle of Destiny! I give you a tiger on a bus in the middle of Piccadilly Circus! The poor stripy fellow stuck in the world’s most urbanite jungle, he seeks the OPEN wild, for there, somewhere, lies his true HAPPINESS…”


Photography Originally Posted In: ‘A Tiger In Piccadilly Circus’ | © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2014
Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2016

In 158 Words: Mr Robin & I

Old photographs embroidered in threads of new words and whose count equals to my height measurement in centimetres…

No man has ever dared to compose lines of Poetry for me.  I do not mean to speak of those flashy and self-promoting displays of poetical expressions that are found all over social media.

When I stood quiet and calm on that pebbled beach in Brighton, I was aware that on this very spot another polymath born with an almost divine sensibility for the poetic voice had also looked out in the same direction as I, and that when he wrote he did not seek approval, he sought a loving communion.

If Mr Rabindranath ‘Robin’ Tagore – another demonstration of my compulsive tendencies for pet names! – had lived in our times, and if he had known about me, and I of him, we would have flung little paper airplanes to each other. Their flapping wings the paradise of a beachcomber, wherein white shores are kissed in seaweed bangles – handwriting no one else could understand, save only I and him… ♥♥♥

Tagore’s Brighton: A Message From Brighton Pier To You

“… If I am united with my Love in the life that remains then I should like to bring him to this spot, in Brighton, where over a century ago another intoxicant of the pen and gardener of the heart cultivated secret dreams…”

Photography & Poem Originally Posted In: ‘Tagore’s Brighton: A Message From Brighton Pier To You’ | © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2015
Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2016

In 158 Words: On The EVE Of My Arrival

Old photographs embroidered in threads of new words and whose count equals to my height measurement in centimetres…

Never had I laid eyes on an apple so green and bright. The curves of its form resembled the deft stroke of my own fleshy hips, and the fire-blood of fertility and of the virility of millions of unborn forests curdled all round its hard sides.

I could not take my eyes away from it.

Do not be afraid, I will only know Myself if You come to know Me”. My heart replete with admiration for the words of God, I stepped forward and plucked the apple and bit into it.

At first a sweet rush and then a fierce explosion blew out from my Onyx Eyes.

My Lord, I can See!” Breathless as the joy of realisation set my body on fire, God delivered his Faith in me, and perched the flame of my body on a tiny dust ball of swirling blues and bristling greens.

Wherever you stand, plant the memory of My Garden under your feet…♥♥♥


Inside My Onyx Eyes

“… My world with you is the laughter of God and safe it resounds in these onyx eyes… “


Photography & Poem Originally Posted In: ‘Inside My Onyx Eyes’ | © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2014
Words: © Masufa Khatun | Mazzy Khatun Photo Stories | UK 2016