If you take a train that goes through Birbhum – a district in West Bengal – you may encounter men and women known as Bauls who play handmade instruments and sing for alms. A number of their songs are phrased in terms of riddles. Some are known as dehatattva (songs about the body), which allude to yogic sex and the ingestion of bodily emissions. But many others speak about the love and longing for one’s guru, or the love between the dark Lord Krishna and the milkmaid Radha. That the singers dress in white and ochre clothes might lead you to believe that they are wandering renouncers without a fixed abode. Yet most Bauls settle in the village of their birth or their husband’s birth and many Bauls have children. I lived with one such family, learning to sing Baul songs and traveling with them to perform at festivals and harvest celebrations.