Natural Mysteries2 mins 245 2 mins 245
The pecks by a sparrow's moist feet
Are trickling down the windowEngulfed by tiny water-drops.
Like bandits in a forbidden prison,
Infamous once, forgotten thence.
They add the sharp knock on the pane
To their unconscious water-work.
As if to cut and saw the glass
And then gently heal it with
The flow of the whispering water.
A squirrel feels her claws take on
The force of the bark of the Ashoka tree.
The brusque bark bristles against her fur
And soothes, caressing the irritation
That some wild-berry, immobileInconspicuous- a tiny twig, red fluffHad unwittingly inflicted.
As she defeats gravity with the friction
Of her claws- she enters the sight
Of the birds at my window-sill.
The bottom of her eye catches their wink
And flits upward. Was that a smile?
Oh yes, mild and bashful, but a smile still.
Now she has not only herself rolled up
But also the corners of her lips.
Until a crow almost deafens her
Out of existence. But the ripples of the soundJerk against the tree, and she almost imagines
That she saw the stolid tree chide the bird.
His unheard words give her unseen energy.
Jerk- Grrr. A fruit falls plump to the ground.
Is it an unripe mango or a ripe Imli?Both waiting for time to make them wanted.
The cushion of the Earth is bruised
But her patience is lather enough to heal.
And suddenly the intricate latticework of the treeTurns its eyes towards bereaved companions.
But ouch! She wasn't done, their inertia heaves
As the squirrel bites into her first fruit,
Uncaring, unsparing, immersed. The latticeworkGapes, then embarrassed, is geared To face either fate.
In the shadows of the discarded fruit
Creeps a mongoose, eclipsing all else
In that plane of sight.
It walks the ramp,
But it manages
The effect of praiseworthy success.
It dawdles, scurries, jumps, skips
And disappears in the brown bushes.
Reminiscing over both, flamboyant appearance
And clever 'disappearance'.
The pigeon is the artist's touch.
Ubiquitous as they might be, their grey
Gelling with the cement and the gravel, The stone.
But they are never camouflaged
Self-importance raises their crests
Confidence outlines and demarcates them
From their drab surroundings.
Spokes and surfaces of iron galvanized
Are held to distaste, dust and must
Belong to their realm.
They wear no frills
They want no fancies.
They just want
To be seen, recognized, listened to.
They want to belong.
Jam, thud, falls a bark.No casualties.
As monsoon's here
So are the hasty feet tapping in the water
Noisy, incomprehensible sounds.
Envelop the sight, finally outside
Foiling the balance of the lap of nature.
And so the rightful citizens retreat. And are saved.