28 Aug 2015

The Story of Ryan | Chapter 4

Time could bring Ryan back to India only after 6 more months had passed by. This time it was a jammed packed young audience in Bengaluru’s G.H College. Seeing such response from writers didn’t really matter to Ryan but it was unbelievable at the same time.

How did his work again so much attention when what he wrote was his heart’s outpouring? He couldn’t imagine seeing his book “The Song of Ecstasy” amongst Top 10 Best Sellers in TOI’s listing.

In the audience was Saki, Ryan’s college friend, looking wide-eyed at Ryan’s interview.

Finding Ryan was a tough job for the publishers. Although his habits of never waiting at a place for more than 7 days, not receiving calls, refusing invitations to parties frustrated the publishers, there was another reason they could not ignore him now: people had started loving his work. And Saki mattered as she was the only person who knew Ryan’s whereabouts.

The interview was going good only until the last question. Ryan walked out of the stage as Saki immediately went towards the back end of stage thinking to herself, “He’s the same Ryan. Nothing could change him in these years.”

“Why do these interviews happen when they don’t know what to ask?” “Saki, how did he dare to say that my rebellion to leave back the norms of this world was a fashion?”

“Woah! Let’s get out of here first” said Saki dodging the crowd who seemed to appear from all corners for autographs and pictures.

Ryan tried to relax in the cab as they headed towards his favourite hotel in the city, H. Swamy’s
Udipi Bhavan. His behaviour amused Saki. As he was relaxing, Ryan would suddenly get up to scribble something on the pad, sometime just strike off the entire page and again close his eyes, resting his head in the seat.

“How is your work going on? Still working at your dream job of a teacher?”

A startled Saki looked back hearing Ryan’s sudden questions. “Yes! I’m thinking of starting my own kindergarten school next year.”

“Wow! That’s great.” Ryan’s face beamed with more joy than Saki as if he was going to start the school. There was this one thing that could bring up Ryan from his sleep: hearing someone following his passion with unending enthusiasm.

“You haven’t changed Ryan. That wide smile...”

Ryan couldn’t ignore the look in her eyes. Her stare was broken with Ryan’s words, “So here we arrive at H. Swamy’s...”

The aroma of filter coffee and rasam wada couldn’t stop nostalgia from spilling out of Ryan’s heart
and mind.

“Our first conversation began in this place during our educational tour to India. It was me trying to impress you by telling you the meaning of your name: blossom or hope” said Ryan with a hearty laugh.

“But it was your one look which told me to shut up and stop fooling around.”

“I think no would believe we would ever become friends, Ryan.”

“Yup” said Ryan with another sip of coffee over a bite of the rasam wada.

Saki was Ryan’s classmate from the Nightingale School of Literature. In those years when Ryan was least interested in literature, it was Saki who had brought Ryan back to the world of words. Being bought up in an orphanage in Japan, Saki never had the chance to know what it means to live with a family.

“But Ryan, where did the media get all these news threads from? About your personal life, your being missing from school for 6 months, your odd habit sleeping only on every 4th day. How did they get these details?”

“It doesn’t really matter Saki. Just that my books are selling good, they are struggling to find ways to keep people interested by trying to mystify my life.”

Saki couldn’t believe whether it was the same Ryan who walked out of an interview, furiously cursing the same media. Here’s he was lost in the joy of rasam wada and filter coffee, with no signs of anger over his forehead.

Her eyes couldn’t stop believing that this was the poem Ryan she was reading in his recent best seller, The Songs of Ecstasy. Apart from the publishers who had copies of Ryan’s poem, it was Saki who had every single word written by him.

The 2 line poem read:
When there is lot to express, words are scarce.
So strange is the language of love which speaks through eyes
when the mind has surrendered to your beloved.

“Do you remember the old Ryan? The media isn’t totally wrong about your life being mystified. It is unbelievable Ryan. How would a rich, young, spoilt brat who pursued literature because there was nothing else that would give him a degree without doing anything, turn into a bestselling author?” said a puzzled Saki.

Ryan, after finishing that last drop of his favourite filter coffee, concluded “It was with that camp in Uttarakhand which started the chains of events. Yes it’s unbelievable! May be meeting him was destined, as they say.”

“Whom?” asked Saki, as Ryan paid the bill, popped in two pinches of saunf, the Indian mouth freshner, from the counter and smiled at her mischievously.

26 Jul 2015

A Letter from Ryan | 26th July

Finally the mail arrived in Rebecca's letter box.

As Rebecca's hands opened the envelope, they became alive at the touch of moist tissue paper which had something written over it.

She could make out the last line which was blurred " Yours Beloved, Ryan".

It was the promised poem written with the eyeliner.

If I were a Woman

If I were a woman
I would loved to be cared
not handled

The pleasure that you seek in me
I would love to give more
when your eyes speak
of the promise of being together

More than your support
it is your company I long for

Never before was it so lonely to be alone
When I'm with you, that loneliness become solitude.

Rebecca couldn't stop her fingers from feeling his warmth, at least in words.

Yours Beloved,

23 Jul 2015

Ryan's Diary | 23rd July

Solitude and noise, both are within.
It's a choice you can make.
- Ryan
India, 23rd July '15

17 Jul 2015

The Story of Ryan | Chapter 3

The coffee cup was no longer in his hand when Ryan woke up. Welcome to India!
Whether it was the soil or the people, Ryan had some connect with India which bought him back every 3 to 4 years. Was it the spiritual seeds instilled in him through his mother's hymns? He didn't want to analyse. He felt it.

It may be because he entered this world in India, when his mother delivered at the age of 20 in Delhi. His every visit to India, was the beginning of a new relation.

Isn't it so strange that we are so eager to name each and every relation, either ours or others? And when these relations don't fit the socially accepted names, the moral police in us begins to blow whistles.

It was about 3 years ago that Ryan was in India with his girlfriend, Macy. He could never forget that visit to Assam and listening to Bauls. These folks called Bauls, are the wandering minstrels in West Bengal and Bangladesh. As a tourist, Ryan naturally ended up seeing and listening to Ramaa Baul.

The first time he listened to Ramaa, he couldn't understand what happened. His stay of 3 days extended initially to a week and finally 3 weeks. Macy was fed up of staying in Assam. "What did you like so much in Assam? Delhi's happening. I wanna go shopping and there no malls here!!! Ah! You don't understand me at all!"

The anger would subside every time Ryan would take her for the river cruise and good food.
It was from 3 years that she was seeing Ryan. The way he would effortlessly write poems and perform them on guitar was when Macy first noticed Ryan in college.

This time she had decided to propose Marriage to Ryan. "It's the last day of our tour, Ryan. Can we go to the Chandubi Lake in the evening? It's really beautiful! I have heard that many migratory birds come there."

"Sure, meet me there!" he said with his peculiar smile as he left for the day.

It was already 2 hours since she was waiting, but Ryan was nowhere. In these 3 weeks, Macy knew where to find Ryan when he wouldn't return at the hotel. Since they had heard this Ramaa Baul, Ryan had only one thing on his mind all the time, her songs. But was it only her songs or ...?

Macy went to the Baul's home only to find Ryan and the Baul. There were sweat beads on Ramaa's forehead and there were tears in Ryan's eyes. Listening to the door suddenly open, both of them couldn't understand where did Macy come out of. The door banged and Macy went back as Ramaa's ektara was lying on the floor.

Next morning at the hotel, Macy was gone and Ryan woke up as his mobile beeped with a new text message: "It's over Ryan. I unnecessarily defended u, even when my frnds said tht u r a wanderer. I stood by saying tht u are a creative soul. They wer ryt tht u cannot b a lyf partner."

Beeped another text message: "Sm street fellow playng musik and u walked 2 kms after him...I admired u fr this madness. bt now I hate u. Wht was so special in tht girl? After all she was jst an ordnry singing beggar!"

"I knew wht u bth were upto when I saw u togthr alone in tht room. I wanna knw ur relation wth her??? I was to propose u last evening. Wht abt our relatn of 3 years? Rya... Ah! I hate talking ur name. It's over!"

Ryan's replied, "You know Macy, reading your message, I'm happy for what happened and that you didn't propose. And speaking about relations, some relations cannot be named. That evening her face was glowing and her forehead was full of sweat as..."

"...she was was lost in performing for her lord, nothing else. My eyes were moist being lost in her devotion. I didn't know when her devotion lifted me with her."

Back from 3 years, Ryan was pulled back into the present, by the plane's landing. Inside himself he could hear Ramaa's ektara strumming.

At the New Delhi Railway Station that morning, one ticket to Assam was booked in the name of Ryan Davis.

Image courtesy: www.aurovilleradio.org

5 Jul 2015

The Story of Ryan | Chapter 2

It was the first night he had ever spent with a girl, an entire night.

“What do you want me to play”, asked Rebecca, the violinist he had met on the streets on Russia.

As a street musician she was used to a variety of responses from people: catcalls, eyes full of appreciation, hate, nasty suggestive looks and sometimes unwelcome touches when people passed by as she was lost in her strings, playing in the train station subway.

That evening when she saw Ryan, the only person standing and listening to her on a blurred background of people rushing to their homes, having no time as usual. She could never understand when someone said, “I have no time”.

Ryan was the second person she had met on the streets who listened to her play, standing for more than 2 hours in one place without his eyes winking for a moment. The first one was an orphan mesmerized by the sound.

“Anything you like”, said Ryan as he climbed into the bed she was sitting in with her violin.
“I’m talking about the violin”, she teased him touching his stubble.

As he smiled and his face glowed he slowly put aside her hand. She found this strange but loving, seeing no trace of wanting pleasure from her like many men she had met.
His eyes moved across her bedroom he could see pictures of great violinists, all over the wall. Surprisingly there were no notes or music sheets.
“I have never formally learnt music”, she said sensing his next question.

As he moved closer she gasped for breath and closed her eyes. Only to see him again slowly resting his head in her lap as the bow continued to glide slowly over the 4 strings. His eyes closed, lips drew a thin smile and his mind was lost in the waves born of the strings coming from Rebecca’s heart.
The whole night she was playing lost in her own mood forgetting the presence of a second person in the room.

The next morning, her eyes opened to see the sun rays cuddling her through the window. Ryan was nowhere. The only change noticeable from the previous night was a paper note tucked under the strings and a white rose placed on the side table.

She jumped out of the bed ran to the bathroom, then to the kitchen and lastly near the open window hopeful of seeing him so that she could call him back…never to leave again.
She didn’t know what happened last night…nothing really happened but she felt good. It was that peculiar feeling we have in our company when we are alone but feel complete.

Her eyes became moist as the lips read his words from the note:
“It was exactly 23 years ago that my mama left us…I was only 3 then. But from my faint memory of her she was graceful like you. Friends said that she went away with a violinist from the local choir as papa would spend all money in alcohol. Whom do I am blame for making me feel lonely…mum or papa? I don’t know. Everyone has his own version of truth.


I don’t know what it is, but there is something about women I have never understood that draws me to them. My mother was one such woman I feel the longing to meet.

What makes men crave for seeking pleasure from women? Is it the way they are built? I don’t know. But I’m drawn to them for their quality of acceptance…the way they accept you completely with grace and love. Perhaps this is why men feel more complete in a woman’s company.

If you are thinking why I spent the night with you…it must have been obvious by now that I never came for pleasure. It was those strings in the subway that drew me to you.

There is a part of me you completed.

Will we meet again??? Who knows may be we will.

Who am I and what do I do?
I write for a living. But it’s from the past 1 year that I have not been able to pen down anything. I don’t know why, but today morning when I woke up and saw your face lit up mildly by the morning sun…I rushed for the pen and paper. Not finding it, I poured out my heart in a poem with your eyeliner on a tissue nearby.

You will receive it in post, soon.

Yours beloved, 

Ryan looked outside the flight window, as his memory took him back to Parvathy Baul’s performance he had seen in Assam, India.
“I’m coming home” he said with first sip of the coffee.

Dedicated to my first reader, my beloved
 - Heramb

21 Jun 2015

The Story of Ryan | Chapter 1

All he wanted was women… more women. No! Our first perception may not always be right.
Why would someone want women’s company without seeking pleasure?

I don’t know.

But that was the way Ryan lived every time he stayed with a women.
Stayed? Yes, it was only 7 days the woman could see him around before he vanished, forever.

Who was Ryan? Was he a psychopath or a lover?
What happened in those 7 days? What did he find in her company?

There was this girl he met on the streets of Russia. A street musician she was.
What was it in those 4 strings that captivated him?

I really don’t know.

24 May 2015

Tears are Good

Tears are good in love
They help you see your love clear
Washing away cobwebs from the mind
Teach you to love without fear.

When clouds of doubt
Cover the land of love, making things unclear
Any every breath is like a
Wandering deer.

Tears roll out
Clearing the channels of bliss
Flooding your cheeks
Where your lover plants a lovely kiss

Blessed you are
If you can from your heart
Because that life’s chance
To love again before your lover departs.

listen to Cradled in Love by P.O.T.F
picture courtesy: bcor from smashinghub.com

19 May 2015

The Broken Mirror

Ibrahim lived in the city of mirrors, Shahar-e-Aaina. Famous for catering to the taste and whims of the princely of seeing their own image and adoring it every day, the city of mirrors as goes its name, was a large marketplace of mirrors.

But truth is always stranger than fiction. Beyond just the mirrors, in the realm of magic lay the special mirrors, which only the chosen ones could create.

Ibrahim was one such craftsman.

After having created mirrors which always showed the good image, which everyone desired, no matter how nasty they behaved in reality.

Caught in his trap for the past 40 years, Ibrahim was lost every day in looking at his good image day and night and added disharmony in his family. His love, Abeeda, was with him yet alone for these 40 years. Not that they wouldn’t talk or something. Every day, Ibrahim would ask her what she wished to buy. But that was not she had married Ibrahim for.

In this business of mirrors and money, she had lost the Ibrahim she met in the market, 40 years ago, the Ibrahim who never looked into a mirror to see his image.

She knew it was a disaster. But this had to be done.

That night Ibrahim could hear all the mirrors in his workshop crash and Abeeda could see her Ibrahim once again, released from the prison of mirrors.

19 Apr 2015

The Day I met Myself

It was as if I was scattered before
With each moment dragging me behind in the sands of time

Trying to find myself in those faltering steps
I was losing my sanity in the wishes of mind

The day we met
I am sure I found something

I want to lose myself in those eyes
Only to find who I truly am

Listen to Tu Mera Dil

5 Apr 2015

The Street Corner

The way he thought of things around him, made everyone believe he was out of his mind.

He was in love with life. Every moment lost in his ecstasy. They called him a fakir or the man who had left everything behind.

But he was among the few who had found what each one of us is searching for all our life – the meaning of life.

With nothing around him, and those around hurrying, struggling and fighting for silly things, he sat on the street corner watching each new timeless moment passing by.