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Reviews from
Rama devi, A Glimpse from the Past


Non-fiction

  18 total reviews 
Comment by
Teri7
Premier Author
Teresa Shortess
 
Poet Rating
  Rank:  43 (+6)
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Review Stars
  
 Rank:  41
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
This is a very well written and very nice non fiction post about our own Rami Devi. You used very good descriptive words and very beautiful imagery from the art work you chose. I enjoyed reading this and reviewing it. I saw no spags or errors in this writing. love and blessings, Teri


 Comment Written 17-Mar-2019



reply by the author on 18-Mar-2019
    Thank you very much for reading and reviewing .
Comment by
easyeverett1
 
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level

Hi Sanku. Not too long ago I received a review from you for a poem I posted this morning and in response I clicked to your
site to read a post of yours which I had not done before. I started to go through the flashing posts first and then was
going to go on to your portfolio if I did not find a post of yours that I wanted to review at this time. I saw this poem
flash right as I picked up my clicker and was struck, of course, by the name. I immediate clicked on this wonderful
essay filled with all the elements of this wonderful woman
who has been my adopted sister for at least nine years. My admiration for her dogged work to make herself not only a better poet and writer she also worked and worked on her
ability to rise above all of us in her application of what all that work achieved. Everything you mentioned about my sis was no surprise to me at all except the location where she shares her generous calling of faith beyond FS directly to the people. Your contest entry sharing the experience of Rama diva in your beloved home country on such a tragic occasion concurs with our experience with Rama devi here on FS as a cherished poet, writer and, of course, reviewer of extraordinary gifts. And my experience with my little sister has included all the attributes you shared in this entry. The warmth and compassion of this remarkable human being is present even though I have never physically met sis in person. She radiates her unique and unequivocally honest 'goodness' in the digital universe to me as fully as she obviously did to you and your mother in that hospital so very far away. Rama devi is a glittering representative of the faith order she so loves and her example exemplifies the human communities highest and most revered attributes of human nature itself. Great tribute to a great woman of faith, friendship and talent. Her big brother, tom


 Comment Written 26-Feb-2019



reply by the author on 27-Feb-2019
    Thank you very much for this beautiful piece. It is a beautiful coincidence that i met this lady in this virtual world .Since i no longer live in my home town ,my visits there were very few and always vvery short.Now I want to make a visit to Cochin and if posible meet her.This is in my bucket list.I have my elderly mother who live with me ans so i dont go away that much
    When i realised that she is a much loved person here in this site, all i wanted was to give a glimpse of her life in India so that her fans in FS get to know her real worth .I had stood observing her often as she moved amonf people in the hospital,and had wondered about her generous heart that prompted her to come to an alien country to serve people.Now I regret not saying hello to her .
    I hope soon i will be able tomake a trip to Cochin.
    hanks so much.
Comment by
robyn corum
Word Twister
Story Catcher
 
Poet Rating
  Rank:  3
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Review Stars
  
 Rank:  6
 

#3 Ranked Poet
Average
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Dear, Friend,

Hello, there! Hope you are well... You see, I FEEL like I began this review in the Spring of 1943.... haha

You would absolutely never - in a million billion years - NEVER believe the trouble I have had with this review. NOR how long it's taken me to complete it. (*smile*)
I've done the best I could - without even finishing the review - sorry! - and I hope you will accept the following comments and suggestions regarding this post about the tragic death of your brother and the unexpected blessing of meeting a special new friend.

I'm concerned you may think I'm being a bit harsh or too blunt with you in some places in this review, but that's how I review. I always try to help others the same way I'd want them to help me. I feel that's what we're here for. To bring out the best in each other. (Boy, I hope you agree.)

You've shared a terrifying/ horrible/ nightmare story. I am so sorry you've had to go through this. Believe me when I say I will be praying for you and your family tonight. (!!!) I know that may not seem like much - although our God is an awesome God!! But I also wish I could crawl through this screen and give you a huge hug.


On another note -- I happen to know rd (rama devi) personally, and she's just as amazing as you've described - maybe even more so as you get to know her. I've never seen her lose her cool OR that sense of overwhelming compassion.
rami devi and I, working with sixteen other female poets for over a year, created an anthology of Japanese short form poetry. So I can sincerely tell you she's marvelous to work with, as well as being quite diligent and humorous. (No surprises there, huh?)
Next are the notes I made while reading your piece. Please take your time going through them, and let me know if you have any questions.

1.) Remadevi, A Glimpse from the Past
--> rama devi is the actual spelling - with an 'a'
--> two words, all lower case

2.) Waiting lounge attached to the ICU of a hospital was a sure stage for Death and Sorrow to do a tango.
--> (The w)aiting lounge attached to the ICU of a hospital (is) a sure stage for Death and Sorrow to do a tango.

3.) (Visitors,) waiting with anxiety, hope(,) or fear writ large (across) their face(s) keep eyes focused on the doors to the unit, which open now and then, as a nurse or doctor flits in or out.
--> more streamlining, plus using more 'immediate', visual language
--> also, multiple (visitors)/people means multiple 'faces'

4.) The constant flow of people in and out of different departments were all faceless people.
--> [First a quick note - I had to stop for church services and when I got back, I had a hard time finding my place. *smile* If these are out of order, I apologize.]
--> The constant flow of people (through the) different departments (seemed) faceless.
--> here's why: a.) you already used 'in and out' b.) you already used 'people' in this sentence c.) all these prepositions end up giving this phrasing a sing-song quality that's hard to take seriously. And it seems important that readers do take this seriously
--or-- The flow of people, moving constantly from one department to another, seemed faceless to _____ . (character's name)

5.) Except for one, (maybe,) because she was so very different from us.

6.) She was tall and slender(;) fair with light brown hair.

7.) I kept seeing her everywhere- talking to patients,relatives, and at times to nurses and doctors.
--> as a general rule of thumb, it's good to watch out for gerunds (those 'ing'-words) to help you spot any moments of 'passive' voice and passive writing over 'active' voice and active writing. As the descriptions may indicate, you ALWAYS want your writing to SHINE with ACTION and the feeling that things are happening HERE and NOW. Right? *smile*
--> I saw her everywhere. On the third floor, where she brought ice to a patient with a raging fever. At the Information Desk, where she offered her cell phone to a dad whose own phone died the same moment as his daughter. We watched her work with patients,(space) relatives, nurses(,) and doctors.
--> I do realize I have just interjected fiction into your non-fiction story, but I'm hoping you'll see what I'm aiming at. The type of examples that might provide CONCRETE, BEAUTIFUL images for the reader...
--> and btw, it's okay to add a few editorial facts in a fictional piece to add characters. When you do a 'memoir', for example, you are EXPECTED to do this. Sometimes, these kinds od details can help show instantaneously something that might otherwise take many other examples or chapters to explain. Make sense?
--> ***referring to the 'passive/active voice and 'gerunds' -- hope this makes sense. You're welcome to ask questions, if not. Or do a Google search for 'passive voice in writing', if you like. (It also occurs to me that you may very well know much, much, more about all this than I ever THOUGHT of knowing.)
--> by the same token, you are also perfectly welcome to ignore every comment I'm offering, obviously. I sincerely hope to help, but only you know what your goals are for this piece, and I realize that. I feel that my job here is to share my honest thoughts and perspectives (exactly as I would want someone to do for me.) YOUR job is to wade through all this muck and mud to see if I've offered anything useful. (YUCK!)

8.) "She must be Amma's disciple", that was my immediate thought. The hospital was run by Amma's charitable trust. (Amma is a spiritual Guru who is generally known as The Hugging Saint. She is immensely popular in the West. Her official name is Matha Amritanandamayi. 'Matha'and 'Amma' both means 'mother' in almost all Indian languages)
--> This particular hospital is funded through a charitable trust provided by a spiritual guru named Matha Amritanandamayi. This unique woman, better known as Amma, and commonly called The Hugging Saint, is immensely popular in the West, and I couldn't help but think the helpful lady I'd been watching must be one of Amma's disciples.

9.) My mother, seeing the lifeless form of her son, who used to be her blue eyed boy sobbed uncontrollably
-->My mother, seeing the lifeless form that was once her blue-eyed boy, sobbed uncontrollably.
--> (As well she should. Oh, my! Oh, my!!!! Bless her poor soul!!)

10.) (Once a) brilliant orthopedic surgeon, how could he have
--> A matter of opinion, here, but I think this interjection would help with transition and flow.

11.) My sister(-)in(-)law and her two daughters managed
--> out of curiosity, is this your brother's wife? If so, it may be important to make that clear. Perhaps:
--> His wife--my sister-in-law--and (their) two daughters managed
--> (please notice those are em-dashes on either side of sis-in-law and not just dashes, please)

12.) I held mother tightly and try to lead her away when I felt a pair of hands around me.
--> I held Mother tightly and, as I began to lead her away, I felt a pair of hands go 'round me.

13.) It was the same white clad 'foreigner' whom I have observed many times these last four days.
--> It was the same white-clad foreigner I had observed over the last few days.

14.) She spoke softly to my mother holding her hand and said to have faith in Amma's Grace.
--> She released me, then gently took Mother's hands within her own. In low and loving, comforting tones, she encouraged Mom to be willing to place her hope and faith in Amma's Grace.

15.) I nodded, and would have mumbled a thank you for I was not capable of saying anything more.
--> Humbled and overcome with emotion, I nodded; incapable of more.

--AS I LEAD MY MOTHER AWAY I LOOKED BACK.
All caps here JUST to show you where I got to.
--> this is where I had to stop in my review and I apologize again that I did not finish. I hope you'll still find something helpful in the comments above.

I apologize again for not being able to finish this. I hope you'll find something helpful in here.

BTW, rd's birthday was last week - I've forgotten which day now - but when I wished her a happy bday, I told her about your post and sent her a link to it. You'll be happy to know she was honored. *smile*

Let me know if you decide to edit and I will hurry back over to rerate.

Thanks so much and good luck!




This rating does not count towards story rating or author rank.
The highest and the lowest rating are not included in calculations.


 Comment Written 20-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 21-Jan-2019
    Thank you very much for taking trouble and writing so much .I am sorry reviewing my post was tedious for you. Anyway i am glad there is another Rama devi out there in fanstory..It was unpardonable that I misspelt her name. My husband said it was the ultimate carelessness !
    Thanks for the suggestions and pointing out the spags.
    i had seriously thought of adding a bit of fiction, but decided against.Though WE stood very close, I never thought of accosting her or saying hello.My thought used to be about her interest in Amma or oriental religion for that matter.
    The stars are okay. If you think it's average,then it is average. I dont have any illusions about myself.
    I have noted your suggestions about rewriting some parts.I like some of them.
    Thanks once again.

reply by robyn corum on 21-Jan-2019
    Oh, wow! I went back and edited part of this review. You'll notice it went up after your post was giving rewards?

    When I edited the review, I think I also left out some of the important parts that may have helped with part of your understanding and I apologize. It wasn't with your post I had trouble. I was having medical issues that night plus had my 2-1/2 yo granddaughter PLUS I tried to write the review twice and LOST it completely!

    Then I moved it to my Word program on my laptop! So that had NOTHING to do with the post. WHATSOEVER.

    At 2 in the morning (when my 2 yo have DEMANDED to stay up with me) and I was mortified that I had kept her up that late and terrified my hubs or her mom would find out(!) I had to quit.

    I hope that helps??

    I had explained all that in the review originally, but then thought it was merely clutter in a post that was already really long. Sooooo sorry!!!!

reply by robyn corum on 21-Jan-2019
    Also -- please understand I never said the WRITING was average. The spags merely made me deduct stars. The number of spags led to the number of stars deducted. As soon as you edit, those stars will be returned - and deservedly so.

    It tickles me that you use the word 'accost' - which speaks to your own self-identification, not your opinion, obviously, of rd. I think you need to work on that, dear friend. You sound like a wonderful person and you need to get better and more comfortable at letting others get to know that. *smile*

    Do let me know if you edit. I am standing ready to change the rating. Please have a marvelous week!
Comment by
rama devi
May All Beings Be Happy
 
Poet Rating
 
Author Rating For Short Works
 
Review Stars
  
 Rank:  133
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
My dear Sanku! Thank you, deeply, for this gracious gesture, which is both humbling and elevating! It touched me on an inner level to witness the reflection of that seva through the eyes of those whom I served. My heart is buzzing and beaming now! I'm giving this a six because of the impact it had on me as well as the effective way you draw the reader into your POV and the emotional tenor as well, though there are some spag issues to clean up, which I will be happy to note for you. The energy infused in this write is inspirational. Wow. Feeling blessed by you too. My mom read this, and her eyes filled with happy tears. Pranams.

Spag notes:

*
Waiting lounge attached to the ICU of a hospital was a sure stage for Death and Sorrow to do a tango.

The waiting lounge
(strong opening line with fine personification too)

*People waiting(,) with anxiety, hope or fear writ large on their face(s,) would have their eyes on the door of the unit(,) which would open now and then to see a nurse or doctor flitting in and out of it.

*Sometimes(,) they would call out a name(,) and one or more from the waiting group would rush with eyes hopeful that some medical miracle would have changed their beloved's fate.

* When bored of sitting in the same place(,) I would walk over to the window to look down on the central quadrangle of the hospital(,) or I would walk along the long corridors and peer into some wards with unseeing eyes.

* Except for one, may be(maybe) because she was so very different from us.

*
She was tall and slender, fair(,) with light brown hair.

*She was wearing a white sari and white blouse(,) which made her stand out from the crowd of colourfully dressed people.

*But more than anything, her face reflected a rare serenity(,) and I was drawn to it. I kept seeing her everywhere- talking to patients,(SPACE)relatives, and at times to nurses and doctors.

* 'Matha(SPACE)'and 'Amma' both means 'mother' in almost all Indian languages)(.)

*
On the fourth day(,) our waiting ended. My mother, seeing the lifeless form of her son, who used to be her blue(-)eyed boy(,) sobbed uncontrollably.

*
My sister(-)in(-)law and her two daughters managed to control their grief.

* I looked up into a pair of warm compassionate eyes that told me(,) silently(,) that she shared our grief. It was the same white(-)clad 'foreigner' whom I have(had) observed many times these last four days.

*She spoke softly to my mother(,) holding her hand(,) and said to have faith in Amma's Grace.

*
As I lead(led) my mother away I looked back. She was standing there watching(,) and she gave a slight nod as if saying that I must look after my mother. At that precise moment(,) I regretted not talking to her earlier. I realised what she was doing in that hospital.(SPACE)She was quietly and unobtrusively providing spiritual strength to those who needed it.

My sister-in-law said later that(,) a day earlier(,) The American disciple of Amma had spoken to her when I was not there in the lounge.

*
Once the post-death rituals and formalities were over(,) I brought my mother to Chennai to live with me.

*
Years later(,) I joined Fanstory.

* Once(,) I noticed a name that was very Indian-"Remadevi".

(by the way, on FS, they would find my name spelled rama devi

Love this alliterated line:

Her face seemed familiar-a flash in the firmament of my memory.


*In her reply to one of my reviews there was a reference to Amma(,) and I wrote and asked her where in India she was located.

Then I wrote to her about my brother's stay in the same hospital with the year and month and asked her.(,) "Were you the lady in white who comforted us(?)".(no period)

* The patience with which she reads and and writes detailed notes(,) touching every aspect of the poem/story(,) amazes me.

* Her reviews shows(show) the depth of her knowledge about various aspects of poetry and her willingness to impart the same to others.

*
A couple of months back(,) I asked Remadevi if I could write about this slice of my life where she featured very briefly(,) and she very graciously agreed.

Thanks for sending out this affirmation of a compassionate calling into the universe. So touched, honored and humbled to read it.

Warm Regards,
rd


 Comment Written 17-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 20-Jan-2019
    Namaskaram
    I am very sorry that i misspelt your name .In kerala it is always Rema and though i revised the post at least many times ,I overlooked to check the name.
    thank you for the six stars and all the corrections. I have never read a review of yours (and I have read some of your reviews for others too) without wondering how you have the patience to read and then take the trouble of writing such helpful reviews.
    A reviewer has written a very long review practically wanting to change my sentences. he also suggested that I should have added a bit of fiction. He may have a point but I did not wish to add any fiction to this .I wanted to tell fanstory members about your work and my personal experience of it. Thanks a lot
    regards Santha

reply by rama devi on 21-Jan-2019
    Thanks, dear. I am still so touched you wrote this. No worries about the name! It is short A and long A in Rama (feminine form of Rama). IN the Lalita Sahasranamam, there is a mantra: Om Ramaayai Namah. But many people do spell it with an 'e' to show it is not a long a.


    That reviewer should have realized it was non-fiction and did not require friction!

    Warm Regards,
    rd

reply by rama devi on 21-Jan-2019
    PS -Robyn's review and rating were because of spag and small issues. She was touched enough by your story to share a link with me, for which I'm grateful. She spent a long time on the review and then lost it, and did it again. If you make edits, she will upgrade the rating when the spag's fixed. Don't feel hurt, dear. She was trying to be caring!

    Tons of Love,
    rd

reply by the author on 28-Jan-2019
    Thank you .I am not hurt I never get angry if they give four or three unlike some .in the brginning of my fanstory days ,i gave four to two people who reacted rather violently. then I started reading reviews for others and I realized most of them give five almost like an unwritten norm.Two immediate famiy members are struggling with their life, one of them succumbed last week .I have been running around and am under considerable stress. it has been like this for the last three months.Thats why the delay in reply.coming to the site is like a escape for me.namaskaram.Santha.

reply by rama devi on 29-Jan-2019
    So sorry for your loss, my dear, and i'm sending tons of loving prayers your way and for your family members. It sounds like a super stressful time. Please remember pranayama helps...Infinite Light, rd
Comment by
LynSys
 
Poet Rating
  Rank:  253
Author Rating For Short Works
 
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
Such beautiful peace in the midst of such heartache, Sanku and what a treasure that you found her. The Universe is always surprising us.
Saying good luck in the contest seems kind of shallow after such a moving story, but I do wish you the best.
Lynda


 Comment Written 16-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 21-Jan-2019
    Thank you very much for these stars once again.
    I just wantd to write about seeing her knowing that she is well respected here,in fanstory.
    When I saw the contest i thought why not enter this post .
    Thanks very much.
Comment by
annh
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Really enjoyed your story! I have often found that around death/despair there is magic to behold if one is willing to observe the serendipitous and heed the signposts along the way. In my book, there is no such thing as coincidence. :)


 Comment Written 16-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 29-Jan-2019
    Thank you very much for reading and reviewing .i am sorry for the delay in replying.
Comment by
Sandra du Plessis
Premier Author
Premier Reader
 
Poet Rating
  Rank:  26 (+2)
Author Rating For Short Works
  Rank:  13
Author Rating For Novels
 
Review Stars
  
 
 Rank:  5
 

#5 Ranked Reviewer
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
A very well-written heartfelt story with a wonderful ending and discovery that the person who impressed you while you were waiting for the news of a loved ones death, is also a co-writer here on FanStory.


 Comment Written 15-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 29-Jan-2019
    Thank you for reading and reviewing .I am sorry for the delay in replying.
Comment by
Tootsie55
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
This is a great post and you have done well. Thanks for the insight into this lady well known to FS 'er all over then world. Only one little error I can see... about your Mum at the hospital... and tr[y](ied) to lead her away


 Comment Written 15-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 29-Jan-2019
    Thank you very much.
Comment by
WryWriter
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Very well-described event. (So sorry you lost your brother.) A beautiful story of tragedy, but also one of love and comfort. There are wonderful souls who care...wish there were more...no wish all were such souls. Some suggestions below for your consideration:

see a nurse or doctor flitting in and out (omit of it)

may be (maybe) because she was so very different from us.

'mother' in almost all Indian languages( .) )

My sister(-)in(-)law and her two daughters

I feel very happy that I have met this great person( though for a few moments) (typo-space before parenthesis no space afterwards)

You have talent for describing real life events. Hope to read more of them.


 Comment Written 15-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 29-Jan-2019
    Thank you very much for taking the trouble of writing such a detailed reply.
Comment by
country ranch writer
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Premier Reader
 
Poet Rating
 
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  Rank:  143
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Yes, she is a very kind and giving person to one and all. She is very cared about here on Fanstory. So glad you were able to reconnect with her after all this time. My best to you and yours.


 Comment Written 14-Jan-2019



reply by the author on 29-Jan-2019
    Thank you very much
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