Indian poet and arts manager, Chandrika Narayanan-Mohan is Helen Shaw’s guest in this episode of The Family of Things. She was born in New Delhi and as child lived in the Presidential Palace with her grandparents as her grandfather was K.R. Narayanan, the first Indian President to be elected from the Dalit community. Chandrika’s mother is an Indian diplomat and, as a young girl, she moved with her to Sweden and later to Turkey where she finished school.
University brought her to the UK and after completing a BA and MA in Art History she began working in art auction house Christies but her plans to stay and take a Masters ended when the UK changes its immigration regulations and she was forced, quite quickly, to find to new home. She came to Dublin in 2012, took a Masters in Arts Management & Cultural Policy at UCD, and since then, as she says herself, she has found both a home and her tribe here, particularly in the queer, creative community.
Her work has been published in Writing Home: The ‘New Irish’ Poets from Dedalus Press, The Ireland Chair of Poetry Hold Open the Door anthology by UCD Press, the Green Carnations: 25 Young LGBTQ+ Poets from Ireland anthology by Book Hub Publishing, Banshee, Honest Ulsterman, Impossible Archetype, and Poetry Ireland Review.
She has been featured on The Moth and Mortified podcasts, with work aired on NPR and Irish radio. She regularly performs at literary and cabaret events in Ireland. Chandrika was selected for the Irish Writers Centre XBorders programmes in 2018 and 2020. Chandrika is editor of Poetry Ireland’s Trumpet issue 9, and book reviewer for Children’s Books Ireland’s Inis magazine.
In this conversation she shares some turning points and her ode to Dublin ‘You City Your Boyfriend’, as well as two short poems inspired by her mother, Chitra. You can find out more about Chandrika and her work here: chandrika.ie