Shishir - 2023 Stories - Sandeep Sharma


Message to an Unknown Professor from Ukraine

By Sandeep Sharma


I sent a-thank-you-message on Facebook-Messenger to a professor from Ukraine. She wasn’t my acquaintance though. I know that it’s difficult to read theory and messages of gratitude in this thankless times of war but I just wished to thank her. It was in response to her generosity. Her interest in my book Translation Studies. Her recommendation on the website of her university. Following her university page, I saw her on Facebook.

Her radiant eyes in the picture didn’t reflect the faces of the ones visiting her newsfeed but in the corner of her retina there’s a hue similar to a bright sunflower kept on the study table. She leans on the shoulder of her Hercules-like-husband holding doll-like-daughter, smiling.

I sent a message,” Hope you are fine. Thanks for recommending my book.” A blue tick like the colour of the earth emerged. The message was read instantly, there was no instant reply though. I thanked the Almighty. At least there is internet and light there.Concerned over their well being, after one day, I wrote again,” Hope you are all fine.”

There was no reply. How can I reach their beautiful family? How can I offer help? Reply. Reach. Help. I thought and then felt helpless, more more more helpless. There was no picture or post on her social media that showed pain, suffering, pain, emptiness, pain, smoke, pain, death, pain, shattered dreams, pain. Nor on the pages of anyone who were her friends on Facebook from Ukraine.

Perhaps they all knew that it’s morally incorrect to share trials and tribulations everywhere. I sent her the link of the university website where she shared my book. Like Hamlet I kept thinking for a week: she might have opened the link or perhaps might have not. Maybe she thought that this was an invisible phishing attack. Maybe someone else saw my message. Realizing what I wrote just above, I didn’t send another thank-you-note again.

No reply came for a week, then for a month and so on. I opened the page where my book was recommended ”this link has been removed,” showed the website.



Sandeep Sharma is an Asst Prof of Comparative Literature at Government College, Diggal (HP), India. He is Associate Editor of the journals In Translation (Université Badji Moktar de Annaba) and Traduction et Langues (University of Oran 2). He received the Award of Academic Excellence (2022) by the Arab Translators’ Association for his contribution to research and linguistics. He has published his works with Impspired (UK); SIL International (US);The Yellow Medicine Review (Southwest Minnesota State University); PoetryXHunger (Maryland State Arts Council, US); Southwest Word Fiesta (Silver City, New Mexico); The Anguillian (Anguilla); In Translation (Algeria), HP University (India) and so on. His book on Translation Studies is made available as a reference book in the universities of Africa, Ukraine and India.


Our Contributors !!

Some of our writers!

  • We occasionally invite writers to send their musings. Do send in your work, and we will host it here.
  • Do visit the Submit page to submit your work.