Monday, July 6, 2009

Ashram of the White Album

I’ve been in India for the past two weeks—hence the lack of any postings. I’m not going to try to describe the experience in such a short amount of space, but I’ll just say that I’ve never had all of my senses and all of my thoughts so barraged. (Tsk, tsk: smelled like an attempt.) My friend Tiggy and I kept seeking out some quiet, so we went to Rishikesh. This is a town known for its yoga and ashrams—and The Beatles. It was here they wrote the White Album in this ashram a five-minute walk from where we stayed. (Rumor is Ringo and wife left citing that they missed their kids—and meat and alcohol. Interesting trinity.) The ashram is now empty and crumbling, but in some way that seemed appropriate. All we saw there were some cows—and this one black bird. I was shocked that this hasn’t morphed into a Come-Here-And-Write-Like-the-Beatles profit machine. As writers, we know that trying to follow someone else’s process doesn’t work. I’ve borrowed bits from others, but trying to recreate my own experiences—much less someone else’s—results in only staler versions of the first version.  Here's a link to "Blackbird:"

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