kiskiKAHANI (the Ramayana Project)

300 Ramayanas and Counting . . .
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MANDODARI

Posted on by Imran

Enchanting maiden born in the veils of night As celestial in appearance as righteous in blood Loved by a god, cursed by his consort She dwelt in the bowels of a well To heal parched souls Summoned by the use of an ancient spell She cast her charm in the four directions The demon king deep in meditation at first Didn’t notice the mist drifting and swirling Rising, expanding, ravishing his senses With the kiss of tears on his face A woman’s murmur in his ears He chased a fleeing dream She saw herself in the dream, a haunting A changeling, a mother, a daughter Stranger to kin She watched monkeys and mortals destroy her land She taught her magic to her sons Watched them fall too This slip of dappled loveliness Streaking the shadows of mystic science Mourned her husband to rule a kingdom

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TARA

Posted on by Imran

Churning ocean born dew-eyed damsel Her gentle soul spoke nature’s language Her heart’s monarch was there Through the voyage of white splendour His golden body a temple door to immortal rhythms She flew a bird on the wing through her emerald home Nature’s cyclic greenness murmured its warnings She bade him heed to ominous fate He swiftly kissed her and ruthlessly raced To his second battle veiled with fugitive shadows Vigilant through a sleepless night She listened to Time’s measured tread And in the midst of a motionless trance She saw destiny’s eternal stance Her tearless eyes locked grief and In the quiet reach of a remembered breast She hid a world of storms She faced the cosmic gaze and brought thunder Into the tumultuous darkness of a moonless world Nature stood by in shocked grief As she enthroned her curse in the white flame of her love Never will the cosmic one enjoy a moment of marital bliss And this treacherous deed birth an answering revenge Summoning a rebel courage she seated her love-child Regent in the forest world.  R J Kalpana has published a 3-vol set on Feminist Issues in Indian Literature: Feminism and Family, Feminism and the Individual, Feminism and Sexual Poetics. She has published Temple Dreams, a book of poetry and has won prizes for her poetry which have been published in both national and international journals and anthologies. She was an Editor for the Encyclopedia of Hinduism and has completed … Continue reading

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AHALYA

Posted on by Imran

She was Creation’s loveliest mortal Born of Brahma she was of the earth Held secret in her mystic heart Purple passion’s torpid rhythms Her sighs took a million shapes Each taunting and teasing a striving god He descended from Heavens to touch her conscious soul Her vision stilled when ecstasy weighed her lids A King’s body with a lover’s embrace He witnessed a bridal dawn flower in silence His flaming kisses revealed his need His alchemical heat called an answering gift He laid her on the nuptial chambers of her primal home Bade Time’s sentinels to mark the passing He flanked her thighs and drank her essence She welcomed streams of diamond fire She eagerly sought his rhythmic beats Trembled in the wake of a dream She metered every moan from the eternal voice He dwelt in her boundless spaces As she watched swans silver a dark lake She caught the fragrance of moon flowers in the air and the sorceries of their joy When rage-tide burst upon her torn flesh of heat Bewildered she sought a regal modesty Vehemence strode her bacchaic revels Coerced her gentle self in rigid lines Her spirit locked in an adamantine wall of law She sat in mute cloisters awaiting her redeemer.  R J Kalpana has published a 3-vol set on Feminist Issues in Indian Literature: Feminism and Family, Feminism and the Individual, Feminism and Sexual Poetics. She has published Temple Dreams, a book … Continue reading

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Revelation Space

Posted on by Imran

R J Kalpana’s  retelling of the Ramayana It was deathly dark inside the Hub. It was meant to be, for an order had been given to extinguish all lights. Everybody in the Hub and outside waited with hushed expectancy, eyes nervously flitting between Tosa’kanth and the door that remained firmly shut in their faces. Pip’ek was nervous too but he hid it well. He moved across the members of the Council, smiling encouragingly. He, too, awaited the opening of the door and the sound that would emit forth. He didn’t know yet if it was for the good or for the bad but until he saw for himself, he wouldn’t be able to tell. He hoped things would change now. The luck of Langka would once again shine forth. He was tired of playing hopscotch with giant stars and hiding in galaxies. The people of his Race were tired too, he could sense that. He tipped his head back and drank deeply, working his muscles strongly. The door opened and a clamour of voices reached everybody’s ears. And the Medic finally brought out a small bundle wrapped in a Zero-Point Energy suit that the uninitiated ones are required to wear as per Space Regulations. Proudly she placed the bundle in Tosa’kanth’s arms and said, “Here is your new-born. It’s a girl.” Everyone crowded around Tosa’kanth, trying to get the first glimpse of the baby girl. Pip’ek waited his turn. He … Continue reading

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