November 4, 2012 § 1 Comment

Evening light tugs at the fields and creatures they house. The peachicks have arrived, and so has winter. In this land of birds, little is missed in patterns of change. There is now an everyday revelry in the new.

Advertisements

July 10, 2012 § Leave a comment

The sun remained eclipsed for days, shining brightly at us via a rainbow round a wholesome moon.

Veeraiya, the wisest of storytellers, spoke to us of forests and our role in repeated wanderings through the same. Our paths, he said, create streams. And thus, where we go, water follows, closely by life.

I may have become from a cultivated sea, but the mountains and the waters they birth are now my home. With each setting day, I grow afraid that my return may be distant and new love, challenging to find. It appears as if these mounds are clinging to me and crying out for me to stay, but it is I alone who weeps. These hills and the lives they sustain are my solitude. I may not know them, but their faces I shall never forget.

***

My descent wasn’t as steady as I foresaw. The dependable moon remained through my last day as the sun rose brilliantly from the ghats. Bamboo Rivers lead me away from my new familiar as my love grew mightier than the deep-seated roots that hold up these mountains despite gravity’s snare. This is now my only remaining hope – that my own travels create space for waters to flow and life to rejoice.

For amidst a sea of cloud, the earth is an adventure.

June 4, 2012 § 8 Comments

A few cloudless hours and a week ago, his body was found. Stiff from the weather, there was a meagre moment of doubt, cleared immediately by the visible chip on his left horn; Boltu was dead. He lay unharmed, as if age merely ran him down and swiftly led him away through the night. There wasn’t much to be said, so they charred his massive body, returning it to the earth.

Time has passed; schools have reopened with the first sighting of monsoon clouds, nudging us on with gentle reminders that with the changing of seasons and tides, we become stories with words adrift.

May 31, 2012 § 6 Comments

On occasion, you need to return to remember love.

This past month has seen descendings to varied elevations, from that below the sea to a few metres over a thousand above. A fiery gulmohar, a shadow of elephants, a hornbill praying for rain, an exhausted pregnant goat, a common mormon and Indian crow searching for succulent summer nectar, river and sea food – all accompanied by tepid humidity and dust.

I was lost to worlds of novelty with new-fangled people, vegetation and wildlife only to climb back up the hills, drape a cloth around my own, and walk a familiar road lit solely by a soon-to-be-full moon.

May 17, 2012 § 4 Comments

With sleepless eyes we gazed blearily up at the skies and watched the stars float on the wind. Amidst many, they danced merrily; constantly realigning while always keeping close. Lights bounced off the underbellies of birds as they flew beyond the earth, gathering the heavens with every beat of their wings. They peered through the night remaining on course as we laughed, glad that our journey was hugged firmly by gravity’s tow.

May 7, 2012 § 5 Comments

Vehicles seep through the roots of these hills, steadily eating through their innards and feasting on the sights. They bring in gold, it is said, making all forgivable. Living in a tourist destination ensures summers breeding traffic, garbage and crowds. Bus routes change, exhibitions and festivals spring up, smiles flash from police faces stationed at every corner; we accommodate, we tolerate. All movement is monitored, we are on display.

Unlike Ootacamund, the queen of the hills, we remain an occasionally popular town with more leopard and gaur visiting. Still, sounds of the forest are replaced by those of festivity and street food stalls popping up overnight, as a vegetable show becomes a weekend of visitors for an otherwise quiet hill.

Where Am I?

You are currently browsing entries tagged with wildlife at some extraordinary project.