On the exciting A-to-Z challenge journey. Today letter ‘T’ brings out a story out of me. I hope you will welcome it too.
G for: GHOST ON THE TAMARIND
It was a chill night of December. A full moon night what they call it ‘night of poonam ’ in India. It was like any other night for the other villagers but for Kumar it was a night of the appointment with ‘the ghost’.
A month before, a boy named Dharma was haunted by a ghost in the night of poonam.
The villagers had a strong belief that the tamarind tree was the adobe of an unsatisfied female soul. The village was called as ‘Bhutachi Chincholi’ –the name was given after the ghost and the oldest tamarind tree in the circle. The age of the female ghost was estimated to be over two hundred years. The children and the grown-ups alike in the village were scared to death by the mere imagination of how the ancient ghost might look like. All the accidental deaths in the village were believed to be carried out by the ghost of that childless female. It was the story that she had hung herself to a tamarind tree in the backyard of her house because she hadn’t tolerated the teasing as ‘banzh’ (one who is infertile to bear a child).
The ghost hadn’t given any trouble to anybody for the last ten years and villagers in Chincholi had forgotten about the evil spirit. But the experience of Dharma had flared the suppressed fear in them.
Kumar might be the only person in Bhutachi Chincholi who wanted to meet the ghost. He wanted to go alone to that tamarind tree at mid-night.
In last full moon night, Kumar and Dharma had played a bet. The bet was that one should go alone and hammer a nail into the haunted tamarind tree. Dharma took the challenge and returned puffing and panting. His thin body was shivering more with fear than cold.
As Dharma told, while hammering the nail the ghost had tried to throttle him with the shawl which he had covered around his neck. He ran back home leaving the shawl for the ghost. He fell ill badly that night. After that horrible event, no one would dare even to talk about the incidence and the Tamarind tree.
Now after a month, Kumar took a lathi and went straight to the Tamarind tree lying to his mother that he was staying at Dharma’s home to help him in his study.
The night was shinning with the golden shower of the moon. Kumar would have spent the whole night admiring the beauty, had he not filled with the profound fear. But he had to reveal the truth at any cost.
When he came near the tree, he could hear the drums of his own heart-beats. When he saw the red shawl still hanging to the trunk of the huge tree a shivering sensation ran straight to his brain from the bottom of his spine. The salty drops of sweat on his forehead reached to his lips. He pulled the shawl with quivering hand but it didn’t come off. ‘The ghost is still holding it’ he thought. For a moment he considered to run off but a little more courage would reveal the truth. He pulled it again and at once he was face to face with ‘the real ghost’. He sat under the tree thinking what might have happened. The whole story became clear before Kumar- though fearfully, Dharma had hammered the nail in the trunk of the tree but unknowingly he had fixed the other end of the shawl into the tree. When he turned back, the one end of the shawl was around his neck and other was fixed into the trunk. He thought that the ghost was trying to kill him.
Kumar laughed madly hugging the trunk of the tree. Now the fear of ghost was nowhere but the peace which was the award of the little act courage had spread all around him.
The next morning villagers were sure that Kumar was the victim of ‘the old childless ghost’ as he was seen rolling on the ground in laughter with Dharma.