Tuesday, March 6, 2018



It is my privilege to review Ravi Rangnathan's second book of poetry 'blade of grass' (Read about Ravi’s firstbook ‘Lyrics of Life’, here). In this book of his, I find a very calming touch of expression, starting with the memory of mother and her presence in our lives, reflecting upon the fact that even after our parents leave us, they live in us. I could completely relate to this poem of his coz I can relate to the memories of my mother who passed away when I was a child. In totality, the mother is the divine blessing and the divine inspiration for us to move ahead and not come to a halt and Ravi has expressed this beautifully in ‘Mother’s blessings’.

In 'Liberation' and 'fettered' one can feel the beauty of nature weaved with truth of life, of being, of moksha and of how life binds us, how in mundane everyday life we fail to notice the bigger picture, the beauty of it.

I loved 'Gazing the gauze', where the poet questions how far outside we can see or look and how deep inside can we search? Can we look beyond things; can we dive deep into deeper selves? Can we muse? Can we look? The feel of this poetry is beautiful and can be best felt when read by the reader himself / herself.

Another good poem is ' O' The disguised one '. The mysteries and disguised truths eventually come to surface. Mystery cannot be hidden for long from the seekers. This poetry in all its simplicity reflects upon how the seeker sees beyond mystery and may or may not reveal the truth to the world, but his eyes always behold the truth that he sees, even when others fail to have the vision. A beautiful poem indeed!

'Seasons cannot cage me' is a motivational write. You cannot be restricted beyond your will to do things in life, to follow your passions. Learn to grow out of circumstances and use your strong will as a thrusting force. Nothing can restrict you beyond your will.

'World peace within us' is a multilayered poetry, which on one hand talks of peace that can be established by the people of the world. Nothing can be done alone, a team effort is required. On other hand, it expresses that we exist in the world n world exists in us, and we should not forget that wherever we are, we are same human species. So, let us (you and me) join hands and hold the peace of the world in our hands.

'Alongside' is another powerful poetry aptly questioning the nature of divide that prevails in every sector and almost every aspect of human life. When the Mother Nature is unbiased, the flowers impart their fragrance, the sun and the stars impart their light in an un-biased manner, then why is human existence so divided?

'Alone but not lonely' is another good write differentiating loneliness from solitude stating that the path of spiritual growth is the path of solitude and not loneliness. I loved this micro poetry coz in few words Ravi ji expressed profound truth that we fail to see n live in the process of living.

A beautiful message can be read in Ravi's 'patience infinite?'. The elements of Mother Nature are silent and have patience and like that you must also have patience in life. Things will come to you at the right time.
One lovely thing about Ravi's poetry is the effortless expression that a reader of any age can relate to and be inspired from. It delivers long lasting message to mankind. It helps child gain guidance, youth gain knowledge and the old gain wisdom. You will also find poetry on various themes, feelings, events in life, poetry enjoying the beauty of nature like in the 'dwelling in/on Palani' , or like the day at Parambikulam forest Reserve (kerela) or like the blade of green grass, the youthfulness and the modern tech stuffs ( enjoyable reads like 'not reacheable'), spirituality ( like Shiva - that which is not'), poetry of love and many other subjects. It is an enjoyable read.

Some poems like 'If i could pack your pain away', 'tell me that story', 'fragrance of sadness', 'dream again', 'be the Joan of spark', 'for better or for verse?', 'living out', 'i have asked time to stand still'  are beautiful poems to feel the ecstatic emotion that flows through words. In the end you will get to read interesting haiku poetry as well. In all, there is a beautiful world of poetry that will keep you intrigued and at the receiving end of wisdom while you enjoy the book - the blade of green grass. 

I will recommend this beautiful book of poetry to everyone who likes to read good enjoyable poetry which is easy on the reading mind and thoughtful for the musing soul.

My rating: 4.2 / 5

Some of my favorite verses:

'My mother silently sits on the edge of my pupils'
'Open inner vision and get my grace'
'Entire Earth sits on the tip of my thoughts'
- Mother's blessings.


'Will you gaze outside for illumination?'
Twist contours of even your shade,
Distort every layer of meaning,
Grapple you till you are color - blind.'
- Gazing the Gauze


'Will you focus inward deep?
Going beyond that tidal sweep.
Deeper, deeper near to sight.'
- Gazing the Gauze.


'I perceive you deeply in inured subtleness,
In inner recess of whatever sacredness
Is left of me after a scorching, ruthless sieve
In the embalmed etherealness of my mute silence.'
- O' the disguised one.


'Autumn cannot wear me
As an armour to camouflage.
I will streak out of spring
In search of my own
Leaving all seasons far behind.'
- seasons cannot cage me


'When our hands clasped
It was like piecing the puzzle.
Your hand whispered in my hand -
It was like soul meeting soul...
Holding the peace of the world
In the palm of our hands...'
- world ( peace ) within us.


'We always want to be him or her.
We want to be this or that.
We do not want to move or stir.
We get into a glut, willing to rot.'
                                                                   - if we are we


'Awesome twilight time
Only me and the quiet scene
River gliding at its own sweet will
Yet it is not quite QUIET'
                                                                 - not quite quiet


'How do i enjoy the monsoon moods?
Take a walk, drench myself, unleash
All my dormant cells under strain?'
- monsoon moods


My dream does not die a natural death -
Builds up, layer upon layer, consuming all my nights'
                                                                  - dream again.


'You just love or don't love.
Love is never, ever forever.
Met her now after five years...
She was with her little son,
So was I with mine.
Met as strangers! 'Happy'? I asked.
'Contended?' She asked...
'Love' is a mere story, history;
Living 'life' is the real pristine glory....
- so what if not on same page.


'Come my love, what i long for,
What I only yearn,
Is your look of love
Even if not for me, at least
For my all - pervading possessiveness....'
                                                                - if only for you.


'He won a number of foes, frictions and woes;
Could hardly find him happy, hardly at peace.
- was he not always right?


'Living in' is not the 'in' thing now, living out is...
- living out.


'Her love for him
Written in blood finger pricked
Valentine pledge...'
                                                                        - haiku


'Happy to be just a blade of green grass
In a garden of poets.'
- the blade of green grass.



Ravi Ranganathan is a retired Banker leading a quiet life at Chennai. Very interested in poetry. Writes poems on all topics that catch his fancy  and his poems in various online poetry pages are very well received. He has contributed to many anthologies of poems and won many awards in poetry competitions. He has to his credit two poetry books containing collection of his poems entitled "Lyrics of Life" and "The blade of green grass." published by Xpress publications and Authorpress respectively.


Review by

Dr. Prerna Singla
Founder & Editor-in-chief - Hall of Poets

Author : "The Crown of Sekhmet",  “The Bible of Marriage”

This review is a copyrighted intellectual property of Dr. Prerna Singla and must not be copied in any form without prior written permission from Dr. Prerna Singla. For permission, write at: hallofpoets@gmail.com

To get your novel / poetry book reviewed, write to me at: hallofpoets@gmail.com

Sunday, July 2, 2017


Interview by Dr. Prerna Singla 
( Editor-in-chief, Hall of Poets )

                                                                      Image courtesy Rashmi Narzary
Rashmi Narzary

Dear Readers,
           Today we have with us Rashmi Narzary. Sahitya Akademi Awardee for English Children’s literature, 2016 for her book “His Share of Sky”, RASHMI NARZARY is an author, communication skills consultant, columnist and freelance editor. 

She graduated in Economics and did her post graduation in Human Resource Management from Symbiosis. But deviating from her area of academics, writing remains her passion. Thus was published WINGS, her first book, in the year 2005, which is a collection of short stories. Looking Beyond, her second book, was released in 2006.

His Share of Sky (2012) is her third and Mosaic, a collection of short stories, is her latest book, released in Mumbai last October. Narzary also paints, in oils and water colour.

Ms.Narzary has translated quite a few of Dr. Bhabendra Nath Saikia’s works from Oxomiya to English, of which her two most memorable and utterly challenging works were ‘SHRINKHOL’ (The Chain) and Xanto Xisto, Hristo Pusto, Moha Dusto (Calm and Quiet, Fat and Robust, Very Mischievious!). The first was a Sahitya Akademi Award winning literary novel and the second was a radio play of the 70’s, in Oxomiya. The second work involved tanscreating the play into English prose. She did these translations for the Ebook project, Nirvana Sutra.

Hello Rashmi,
            First of all congratulations for your achievement.

Thank you for the wishes, Prerna !

Q. Please share with us your journey from an ordinary person to 'Rashmi Narzary'.

You know, all through I didn’t even know I was on this literary journey! It was only when interview questions, Doordarshan and the media walked up my door that I realized I had reached some place, which hinted to the fact that I was on a journey all along! It was beautiful, unintentional and life as always and all through, each passing moment, I realized the kind of observation I was capable of, of my surroundings, of the people therein, of situations, of things animate as well as inanimate, and my capability to weave a tale through them, sometimes linking more than one of the above and sometimes dwelling on just one.

As regards ‘from an ordinary person’ to ‘Rashmi Narzary’, hey well...I was still called Rashmi Narzary when I was ordinary and I still remain ordinary now, even though you see me as ‘Rashmi Narzary’ J I haven’t changed. 

Q. Behind the success of every person, there is an inspiration. Please share with us, who / what is your inspiration on your journey?

Like I mentioned, every being and thing around me was an inspiration because I saw stories in all of them, each unique and touching.

Image courtesy Rashmi Narzary
Rashmi Narzary receiving the Sahitya Akademi Award for Children's Literature, English, 2016, from President of the Akademi, Dr. Vishwanath Pratap Tiwari (1) 

Q. You won the 2016 Sahitya Akademi Bal Puraskar for your book 'his share of the sky'. What is the story about?

‘His Share of Sky’ isn’t one story but a collection of 8 short children’s stories, each revolving around Barsau, a ten year old adorable, mischievious Boro boy and the stories are set in the rural backdrop of Assam’s Kokrajhar district.

                                                                          Image courtesy Rashmi Narzary

Q. Please tell us about your books 'Mosaic' and 'shrinkhol' (Translated work).

'MOSAIC’ too is a collection of short stories, 20 of them, written over many years. These stories are about human behaviour as a consequence of human emotions under varied situations. And coming to ‘SHRINKHOL’, it was originally written in Assamese by Late Dr. Bhabendra Nath Saikia, and the original work is a Sahitya Akademi winner(Assamese fiction). I translated the work into English for the Ebook project Nirvana Sutra. It was truly a challenging work but the end result was fulfilling. Very. I had also had the opportunity of transcreating Dr. Saikia’s famous Assamese radio play of the 1970’s titled ‘Hanto Histo, Hristo Pusto, Moha Dusto’ into English prose, once again for Nirvana Sutra, along with a few other Assamese stories by Dr. Saikia. 

Q. Writing and creativity is an art, but at the same time it is also considered a fiction, or a story that sprouts out of a writer's mind. How do you think this art can contribute towards a change in the world? Do you feel that the world needs change?

A change is contributed when we as authors, through our creative work, are able to show readers the world from a perspective which is different from theirs, when we can bring the reader out of her unilateral view of the world and show her the greater canvas with a wider horizon, through a multilateral view. Because as fiction writers, I suppose we have it in us to see the world from different angles and hence, it is on us to show the world through those same different angles and perspectives to those readers who can’t find the angles themselves.

As for the World needing a change, it sure does in some aspects and in certain other aspects, it is wonderful just the way it is! In those aspects, may the world remain thus.

Q. You have written award winning stories and books. Please share your experiences as a writer, in the field of writing.

Experience...well...is great when you get calls and mails saying ‘Hey Rashmi! That piece of yours was sure lovely!’ Again experience...well... is disappointing when you receive rejections. The experience is equally humbling when absolute strangers walk up to you and request for a ‘selfie’ with them and when people compare you with the likes of Ruskin Bond. To sum it up, the experience then is like...Oh My Goodness!

Q. Every person starts from somewhere. When did you start writing as a professional and what struggles did you face on your journey?

That ‘somewhere’ of my professional literary journey is yet to happen, you see, because I’m not a writer by profession. I’m one by passion J And hence, I don’t remember struggling or putting any persistent effort to rise as an author/writer. I wrote what my heart felt like and yes, sometimes I did send it over to newspapers and journals while at other times I just kept them to myself. When those that I sent for publication were published, it was a happy experience. 

Q. Please share something about your upcoming books.

I’m working on a couple now, let’s see how the manuscripts turn up. Because sometimes, even as I write, the plots change along the way without exactly my planning to do so! Funny, isn’t it? But then, that’s what my kids say, we writers are a funny, unpredictable lot!

Q. What advice would you give to the struggling writers?

Advice to struggling writers...ah yes! Stop struggling with your writing and get on with life. There’s a whole world of other things to do. Do them. Engage in other activities. Let your mind sweat over things you enjoy sweating over. Ofcourse, in between, do stay in touch with your writing, have patience (a lot of it!) and keep the practice of writing on. This is one field that takes really long to get a kickstart. If you wait for that kickstart doing nothing else and only whining and waiting, you’ll not live your life. So go live life. And then as you do so, you should also write. Not only write. One fine day when the results start coming in and you look back, you’ll realize you jumped time and hurdles without even knowing you did! Like I didn’t know I was on this literary journey till the media told me I’d arrived ;-) !

Q. How do you manage writing with other works and household? Has your responsibilities ever interfered with your writing? If yes, how do you manage both?

My work and household manage themselves. I don’t. Guess how? Because they are in sync and complement each other in the sense that in my day-to-day responsibilities and chores I find fodder for my writing. Also, I am blessed with a supportive family and a wonderful staff which helps me in the smooth running of my household affairs. And mine is quite some household...with a varied number of dogs, birds, chickens....almost ole McDonald’s farm ! And no, my responsibilities have never interfered with my writing. Nor have my writing schedules and events interfered with my responsibilities. Now as you ask, Prerna, I suddenly realize...hey!...I’m managing both writing and responsibilities! Thanks J

Q. How was your experience with Leadstart Publishing Corp. and how did they help you publish your book?

Post publishing and more precisely, post Sahitya Akademi, Leadstart got Radio Mirchi, Nagpur and Hall of Poets to get in touch with me.

Q. A message for our readers.

Work up on your communication skills. And then learn to express what you wish to convey and be a good listener as well. Understand others and make yourself be understood. Because whatever you want to be, it’s your communication skills that will eventually see you be there. 

Other than that, live your life and let others live theirs, so that others will let you live yours! Quite a tongue twister, is it?! That’s me J Good Luck and good health ! .... Rashmi 

Thank You Rashmi. It was great talking to you. :)


P.S. ~ The questionnaire is copyrighted and the intellectual property of Dr. Prerna Singla. The first publication rights to the interview rest with Dr. Prerna Singla. The interview can be reproduced only with prior explicit permission of Dr. Prerna Singla and the interviewed. A clear bold mention and ping link to the original interview along with the name of the original interviewer, Dr. Prerna Singla, as well as the interviewee must be made when reproducing the interview in part, as an excerpt or as a whole.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017


Rains off a smoky sky is a very pleasant story about a girl and her journey through an ordinary life into being extraordinarily a human being, a trait that seems to have been extinct in the human of today. As I read through the story, I felt it at three levels and from three perspectives;

Saturday, May 6, 2017

My mother - tribute of a yearning son - Book Review

'My mother - tribute of a yearning son' , written by Subhrajyoti Parida is a great book, because of the simple fact that he narrated the deepest of the emotion and the elements of life in the simplest of manner. This is a book that I would always love to keep by my side and also gift to anyone who is in need. Subhrajyoti has very simply shared the story of his mother, how bravely she fought cancer in her last time and how the family stood by her side. To make things even more comprehensible, he has given a brief overview about the nature of the cancer his mother was suffering from, so that the reader is at the same level comprehending where the story is going. You might also want to read about cancers here.

Friday, March 24, 2017

LYRICS Of LIFE - Book Review

Lyrics of life By Ravi Ranganathan

Lyrics of life is an astounding collection of poems written by Ravi Ranganathan.  The poems are jewelled with rich use of brilliant metaphors, using which the poet expresses the crux of his poem, be it emotions, moments, notions or instances. It is as if the Mother nature is talking and inspiring every moment of our life. From this I can appreciate poet’s spiritual awareness towards other things of life and nature, which are often forgotten in a cynical world. The very art of creating poetry out of slight moments is a precious art and the author seems to have a mastery over the art.