Dhrupad and its practitioners inspire creativity in others. This page captures such inspirations.
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Inspired by Aliya Rasheed,  Amita Sinha Mahapatra, Sukhad Munde

Sketch by Nancy Sondow. Aliya, Amita, Sukhad US concert tour 2012.












Inspired by Zia Fariduddin Dagar

the Guru

His voice quavers,
grainy like crunching gravel,
meeting the early notes
with the lilting lapping
of waves upon shore
of the immense depths below,
craggy, yet
grounded upon the swara
like the faultless line of the horizon without
and the steady shaft of prana within.
Over the peaks of frailty
rises Todi
like the first rays
of the morning sun.

He  sculpts the raga in air,
chiselling sound
with breath.
The voice awakens
subtle channels, stirs
dormant energies
coiled, uncoiling,
the infinite spaces
within and between notes
creating permutations
that stun,
that etch
with the masterly
langour of age.

This old master
draws out the raga’s seed
from the many-layered matrix
woven by sage and seer.
Spells of yore
cast yet
upon deathless core.
Tala inheres,
marking time unbidden,
like a pulse.
Swaras, flat and yearning,
sharp and soaring,
rise from  pristine pools of energy,
inner wells
of knowledge
that the trembling cords
draw from,
not away.

Timbre and tone,
of a lifetime’s sadhana,
from chambers taut
taught to harness
breath mind sound and note
into startling patterns.
Some, like pancham,
that still pool of tranquillity,
that succour in mid-flight,
like passing fragrance,
glimpsed  briefly
like startled prey,
awaiting its turn in descent
deferred, unstruck,
hovering, veiled, suggested,
on the brink of utterance.
experienced  briefly
like a drop on parched tongue.

the  chosen heart
of a great teacher
the raga enters realms
Where beauty is formless,
suffused so deep
with a joy so unassailable
it can only come from
beyond the senses.
His voice beckons,
gently by the hand
illuminating  the journey inward.
His body
a vehicle
for an abiding passage
of distilled
oral craftsmanship,
of wisdom unbounded,
of a complete nurturing,
than what father can give son.

May this benediction
continue to be cast
upon all who care to  listen and learn.
And when,
frailty is shed
and the body laid to dust,
may the last exhalation
turn to a mighty current of wind,
into a silent mountain,
teeming  forest
or surging torrent,
or some magnificent tree
that would continue
to shelter and nurture
the elements
that inspire
this great music.

Ustad Zia Fariduddin Khan Dagar
Mumbai, 18th Dec’05


Inspired by Gundecha Brothers

The Traveller

There is a land
where none exists.
it is a search;
a reaching…
a windswept desolation
in which one is ever alone.

Few tread its treacherous slopes
and vast valleys, its
deep gorges and
gilded peaks.

He roams them now,
soaring and gliding, free
as the great mountain eagle,
pinning them in his mind’s eye.

Sharp as the razor’s edge,
they say, is the path
of sur
and sharper still
what lies between.

Caressed by breath
it floods its radiance
upon the raga.

he lights it from within.

Ramakant Gundecha singing
‘shrutiyon mein meend’,

7th Aug’12,



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