Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Week 3 Storytelling: Jatayu and Sampathi.

One evening, Rama and Sita were putting their twin boys to sleep for the night. Being a little restless, the boys asked for bedtime story to ease them into their slumber.

"Let us tell them the story of Jatayu and Sampathi" Suggested Sita, "They need a little reminder of their brotherhood."

“Once upon a time, in a far away land there was a pair of brothers named Jay and Sam,” Began Rama, “The brothers were inseparable. They spent every day together playing, laughing, screaming, fighting….”
“That sounds awfully familiar,” interjected Sita, as the boys let out a giggle.
“These brothers were the best of friends!” Rama continued, “They loved being with each other very much. One day, as they were playing in the field, they saw a bright, bright light off in the distance. ‘What is that light?’ said Jay and Sam almost simultaneously, ‘We should go explore where that light is coming from’ said Sam. So off they went, full of wonder and desire to find the source of this beautiful light.”
“It was a BEAUTIFUL light, unlike anything the boys had ever seen before!” said Sita, taking over the story.
“They journeyed closer and closer to the light, it soon became a competition for them. ‘I’m faster!’ said Jay as he took off running toward the majestic light. ‘No you’re not!’ exclaimed Sam as he came running after his brother.
Suddenly they stopped,” Sita said with a gloomy voice.
“Oh look it’s time for bed!” Rama interjected teasing the boys.
“What happens, mom? Tell us the rest of the story! What happens! What happens” yelled the boys one after another, eager to hear the gloomy terror that faced Jay and Sam.
“Ohh, alright,” said Rama, “I guess we can finish the story”
The boys squirmed in their bed, excited to hear about the fate of Jay and Sam.
“Suddenly, they stopped,” Rama said picking up the story.
“They had approached the light, but this was no ordinary light. It was a huge forest fire. ‘COOL!’ said Jay as he foolishly stared at the raging fire, ‘Let’s go touch it!’
‘No way!’ screamed Sam, ‘Are you crazy?’
But Jay did not listen to Sam, and he approached the fire.
‘I am SO much stronger and faster than you,’ said Jay to Sam, ‘this fire can’t do anything to me.’
‘I’m fast and strong too!’ Sam said, now filled with anger, ‘Let’s race into the fire to really see who’s best.’
Just as they were entering the fire, a fiery branch fell on Jay and burned his arm.” Rama finished.
“Now children,” Sita began, “The reason Jay was burned is because he was selfish, and unkind to his brother. You two need to remember that you always have each other, and to always be kind to each other.”
“Goodnight kids,” Rama said as he kissed each of their foreheads, and they drifted to sleep with the biggest brotherly bond you could ever imagine.

Image of Sita 

Author’s Note
: Jatayu and Sampathi who in most versions of Ramayana were birds, who would compete in their youth to see who could fly closest to the sun. In the original story, one of the brothers flew too close to the sun and his feathers were burned, however the shade of his wings saved his brother. I took the suggestion of making their story into a simplified bedtime story which has a huge moral for Rama and Sita’s twin boys. In my story, the twins too, are often competitive and often let their rivalry get the best of them. Rama and Sita take turns telling the story of how a sibling rivalry can lead to huge ramifications. I made major changes to the original story, and renamed Jatayu as Jay and Sampathi as Sam, in order to simplify the story.  The dialogue of the twins interjections were added in order to make the story more realistic, as if Rama and Sita really were telling their kids a bedtime story. Another change I made was the addition of a burning fire instead of flying toward the sun that caused the boy’s injury. Yet, the story came together in the end to have a lesson that is very important in competing siblings: be kind to one another. I really liked the image I chose. While I may not have used it for its original purpose, the image showed Sita in a maternal role, holding the hand of one of her sons. 

  • Narayan, R. K. (1972) The Ramayana.


  1. Gloria, I thoroughly enjoyed your story. I thought it was super cute how you made Jay and Sam to be the best of friends. Your story depicts a true brotherly relationship of trying to be the better, faster, and stronger brother. I didn’t expect Jay to get burnt by the branch, but then all of a sudden I realized that there was going to be a moral at the end of the story. I really enjoyed the moral of the story because it is such an important moral to realize and remember daily. I really enjoyed this story because it depicted Sita in such a Motherly role. Good job!

  2. Gloria, I love how you used the idea of a bedtime story to retell this tale. It was like a story within a story, but it was not confusing. You did a good job making sure that it was clear and concise. I enjoyed how we got to know the characters in the story, as well as the characters outside of the story. The interjections of the little boys gave the story a refreshing twist, and gave a more realistic vibe to an age old story. The use of Rama and Sita’s children was a great idea! I am used to all my papers being double spaced (since we have to write a million of them), so seeing your story being single spaced was different. Other than that, I think this story was very creative. You did a great job! Can not wait to read more of your stuff.

  3. I loved your storytelling style. I enjoyed hearing the story of Jatayu and Sampathi in a form bedtime story. The idea of having Rama and Sita tell the story to their twins is cute. The message that the story gives is really important for the twins as they are two brothers. I liked the dialogues you created! I agree with Tessa on the format of the story being a little difficult to read. Other than that, I loved your story! You're a creative writer and I can't wait to read more of your stuff! :)

  4. Hi Gloria!

    That was a wonderful story, though there are a few things I'd like to point out. The first is that I feel it would be better if the story was spaced out. When there is so much dialogue, having it spaced out makes it easier to read and is much more pleasing to the eye. Perhaps you may have had it spaced out and copy and pasted it from a word document or elsewhere and Google Docs just smushed everything together. Thats something that happens to me because I write it on Word Doc first and then copy-paste on to the blog post. But thats just something I think would make the format look a little bit more polished.

    The second thing is that there were some grammatical errors here and there, which I think can be easily fixed by reading over your story two or three times.

    The last thing is the picture and the end of the story. I feel a picture of the two siblings, Sam and Jat might have been more fitting. As for the ending, it just felt a little abrupt, but that may just have been me wanting to have more to read because I really enjoyed your story!

    Overall, good job!

  5. I thought your story was a cute example of the family life of Sita and Rama. I liked that you gave Jatayu and Sampathi modern names for the story. The interjections in the story were adorable, such as Rama telling the boys that it was time for bed to tease them. I thought the lesson went well with having twin boys too, because I am sure that they got into a lot of trouble together. Or got into a lot of trouble for fighting with each other. Good job!