Yo Yo Honey Singh!
Photo: Sanjit Mondal.
If hibernating creatures burrowing deep under the soil are an augury of wintry angst, the spectacle of bees humming and hungering deep inside tubular flowers for nectar sings the sweetest of spring's many songs. For bees, flowers are the fountainhead of life, while bees are a messenger of love for the blooms as they surreptitiously lace the burrowing bees with pollen.
Photo: Ragini Kulkarni
Colonel Bimal Sarkar (retd) has undertaken a project to translate 1,800 of Nobel poet laureate Rabindranath Tagore's songs. Excerpted here are verses translated by Rumela Sengupta and Anandamayee Majumdar that lend Tagore's poetical imagination to the bee-flower symbiosis:
"Flits the bee going to and fro, goes to return time and again, only then does a flower blossom, the bud longs to bloom, yet cannot curled up in bashfulness and fright...Step out of your small little self, feel your pulse beat to the rhythm, of this world wide and wondrous, you who are as busy as a bee, do alight sit still amid the azure, be swathed in the golden pollen of sunlight, where freedom knows no bounds, there unfurl your two wings, amid one and all set yourself free...Such is this momentous day of spring, a time of arrival of the restless one, with the magnolia blossoms yet to blow, at the touch of the humming bee, wouldn't you adorn your hair and lace your arms, with the crimson spring flowers, ankle bells chiming with your steps, in the fragrant tranquil breeze...Spring after spring invite your muse within, if she takes her leave so let her, the missives will remain filled with music, she cannot stray too far, her soul will burst out with songs in your garden, retain her melodies in your lute strings, withhold her tears in the bees' hum, fleeting among your blossoms..."HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL
Photo: Vikram Jit Singh
In last week's column, I narrated the harrowing encounter of a stag corralled by seven village dogs into a check dam of Choti-Badi Nagal village, 15km from Chandigarh. I had finally provided the stag an escape route. However, as I had turned from the dam as night fell on March 27, I had heard the hounds bay again in the blood-curdling passion of a hunt. Did the stag ultimately fall to the dogs? Would my hopes of having saved the stag vapourise as mere vanities in the bonfire of realities?
I had on March 9 photographed the same dog pack relishing a sambar it had earlier killed at the dam. Would I see a similar orgy upon blood and decaying flesh? I found opportunity to visit the dam again on April 2 but found no fresh carcass of a stag. Grazier Dhani Ram, who camps every day at the dam, confirmed the stag had indeed escaped that evening of March 27. He also seemed to have reviewed his earlier determinism, expressed on March 27 while I struggled to bail out the stag that nothing could save the deer from the determined dogs.
"Saviours and killers roam the earth. Who knows at what moment, whose will prevails?" was Ram's comment as I sipped goat milk tea laced with 'gur' that Ram brewed under shady kikars. Stirred by a breeze pregnant with the promise of rain, yellow kikar blossoms drifted into my tea tumbler. An idyllic moment. Cheers!
A RARE SIGHT:
A rare specimen of a Red-vented bulbul suffering from a pigmentation disorder, clicked at Fragrance Garden, Sector 36, Chandigarh, on April 2.Since the eye is of normal colour and not red, this bulbul is leucistic but not an albino. Photo: Brig Singh Randhawa
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