Literary Review of The Inevitable
Regulars at eateries and restaurants would savor each dish kept in front of them and never rush into gulping down any delicacy, for the usual visitors are lovers of food habitually attracted to a café by the aroma or the mouth watering taste of the delicious food prepared. Many a quality restaurant serve starters that ignite hunger in a staid stomach, whereas there are some starters that take hunger away from your growling tummy, tossing aside in the process, the desire to dine in a café ever again. The Inevitable is a collection of exotic delicacies spread before on a big table. There are starters, the main menu, side dishes and desserts. The Inevitable café differs from all other such establishments around the world in one way. Your stomach is satisfied with the well thought-out, spontaneous preparation of the starter before each main menu. Your mouth craves for the taste to linger in its mouth and your stomach hastily opens its entrails longing for the tasty morsels to come gushing in. The beauty of the poems acting as starters takes your breath away. You never want to move on, afraid that, the main menu, the side dishes and the tantalizing desserts with the ‘take me now’ look might not perhaps live up to the tasty reputation of the starter coursing down your throat now. Oh boy! Can you be more at fault than this?
That the poetic starters were penned down by Ashay Abbhi in moments of extreme pain is evident by the emotions seeping in between the lines. The aura of death encompassing the poems reminds you of Emily Dickinson’s works. Something there is in Ashay that endears him to death and its characteristics. May be, though you cannot be sure, it is the inevitability of death that propels Ashay to dwell so much on a topic everyone fears, and none dares to venture carefree. The finality of human life is painted in each of the poems either candidly or subtly. Is Ashay Abbhi then, a poet who has lost positive outlook towards life? Is he a pessimistic poet filled with hate, darkness and bile? Definitely not… For under the dark sky through the dark atmosphere surrounding his poems comes forth a piercing light brightening the sullen atmosphere – the main dishes that carry rays of hope for the lost mankind, his stories.
The stories of Ashay Abbhi expose you to the various places that the author has travelled. One can find the entire India ensconced within all his stories. He takes you to all the corners of the country and in fact, you get a chance to visit Africa too. The language of the author deserves a special mention. He mingles and connects with the reader in an effortless manner. When writing with words unheard of and unused usually seems to the order of the day for many budding writers, Ashay has travelled with the experience of a veteran, bringing to the reader the ideas of a modern young man. That is a feat to be applauded! The emotions are strong, with some hitting you right in the face with their brutal frankness. You long for the protagonists, willing yourself to stop yourself from silently mouthing words of comfort to them. Such is the power of the man’s writing.
I have taken the liberty of using Imagine as the title for the introductory poem for which I beg the forgiveness of Ashay Abbhi. Imagination is a gift that sustains human beings. Each imagines things in a different way in his/her own capacity. Who has not imagined? As mentioned earlier, the starter gets you imagining. For imagine you must death, to live until gives wings to your imagination making you soar into the sky.
The 9th Cross
This poem depicts the confusion a just – created spectre has as it travels in search of belonging to someplace, someone… to be comfortable and be loved. The poet has left clues hanging in the poem to guide the reader into the maze of the spectre. A brilliant insight indeed!
The Yellow Wall
You are treated to a serene surrounding as you start this story. The magnificence of Himalayas humbles you as your train goes chugging along windy tracks. As you get down, a sense of curiosity comes out that deepens into a feeling of certainty and horror. The tonga-wallah cannot be forgotten easily. Who is he in reality? It is for you to interpret.
The search for love
The meaning of the poem is clearly but cleverly written to make the readers understand the inner meaning of love. Religion has been used to infuse the meaning lucidly. The language content has been considerably raised in this poem to lend quality to the poem.
Love for Tea
Ashay Abbhi brings out the power of love through this story. The end leaves you in tears. The sacrifice made by the couple through the years, each for the other, is heart-breaking and tear-producing. You can smell the tea leaves from far away.
Five cups of Tea
This poem reminds one of the different stages in a person’s life depicted by William Shakespeare. The five cups of tea tells us the stark realities of life. This poem is a collection of simple words woven eloquently to tell the philosophy of life.
Coffee at Midnight
Chennai comes alive at midnight as the protagonist of the story thirsts for a cup of coffee. The policemen and the coffee-wallah are engrained in your minds. The violence is sudden and short-lived, but necessary for the story to have its effect on the readers.
I’ll take you Away
The poem drifts in like a waft of fresh air, giving hope to the suffering. The poem can be interpreted into any way the reader wants. The one giving hope and taking you away from tribulations could be anyone… even death.
The night it rained
The poverty of India is highlighted in this story. The story is concise and structured in a way to evoke sympathy from the readers. The helpless situation of the poor of the country is pitiable.
A typical day in the life of a person who has lost his/her desire to live and is depressed, is portrayed powerfully in this poem, especially so in the last two lines that read ‘little of life is left to live, little is there to die with me’.
Just another Day
This story of Ashay deals with two things predominantly – mob psychology that can wreak havoc and superstitions of villagers in India. Though comical initially, the story has an upheaval that is disturbingly true of any mob activity anywhere in the world.
The Moonlit Shore
This poem also deals with death and the aftermath. People close in life remain so in death too, lying next to each other, with the moonlight shining on the bodies.
Living to Die
The atmosphere is eerie. It sure does give creeps to the reader. Why does the woman follow the funeral procession? Why does the man not resist the urge to follow the woman? Read on to find more…
Departed from life
A soul narrates the life led by its body before and after the separation of body and soul. The grim silence and the different perceptions from which objects are viewed by the soul make this poem an interesting read.
Gorkhas and their deeds of bravery are shot at us in the mountains of Kalimpong. The atrocities of the military, the natural response of the Gorkhas to fight nail and teeth for their homeland and the dignity of woman are emotionally written. Above all, the utter calm with which Gorkhas face inevitable death is saddening and awe-inspiring. This story deserves a re-read.
A sight travels
The imminence of death is brought out in this poem by a sight that travels over the horizon, into dreams and the world beyond.
The reader cannot but feel sorry for the protagonist languishing in the darkness. The car hit not only the protagonist but also the pride of the character, plunging into darkness his entire life. Evokes pity.
This poem talks about the endless waiting sessions that everyone has in various points of life. This is almost like the poem in which Wordsworth asks, “What is this life if full of care we have no time to stand and stare?”. Powerful ideas contained in a single poem.
The New Year’s Eve
This is yet another story that makes the reader pity the lead character and is filled with irony. The reader can also relate to the character’s musings. A little oversight in proof reading gives a momentary confusion which can be overcome easily.
This poem is proof of the exemplary writing skills and spontaneity of the poet. The emotions jostle for space among the minds of the reader, vying for space.
Bashir Bhai Ghadi Dega Kya?
A hilarious story that has been coated with a terror brush, this is one story to enjoy and let your guard down. The story also tends to make one think that this could have happened or could happen to anyone.
A poem penned for the peace of the world, the writing is filled with deep philosophical insight that could be used as the Bible for today’s terror-stricken world and society.
A trip to Africa amidst gun toting mercenaries leaves you speechless and frightened. The entire scenario is action packed and to a certain extent possible in the world currently. The story is good, but definitely not the best of the lot.
Part of the Game…
A delightful and poignant way of the way of life, this poem is light – hearted and true. The Almighty’s supervision of everything that happens in this life is beautifully written.
Ashes of Bad Writers
This story needs an ‘A’ certification for the gore and violence it depicts. A superb plot, written in a way that shakes and makes you read your work countless number of times, fearing the worst is worthy of the writer. That poetic justice is served makes the story credible.
War torn countries and the plight of countless number of stranded and homeless children probably influenced Ashay to pen this powerful poem. This poem deserves a place with the literary greats of the bygone era.
Ashay Abbhi has come out with a book that has all the necessary ingredients to make that both a starter and main dish, satisfying the body and soul completely. The greatness of the author is revealed in his works, be it the swishing poems or the racy stories. It is of course to be expected that when such talent is there in a person, it is inevitable that The Inevitable must be released. The book is certainly the result of a herculean effort, taking into consideration the quality brought forth and the young age of the author. Nowhere does the author slip, except for a slight editing mistake. The Inevitable will certainly make heads to turn, attracting popularity to the author and changing the world for good, towards peace.