Crow — a common bird, black and mystical. Who has not seen it here and there and everywhere, perched on the roof, on the electric pole, on parapets and boundary walls, stealthily tip-toeing in the courtyard, eating offerings made to it by granny!
Crows have been a part of our socio-religious life, rites and rituals from time immemorial. As a wind-hover, it traverses the sky, surveys the earth below and blinks to see the crippled humanity that has lost its spiritual and cultural props, and fellow feelings.
We have been fed on the fables and parables connected with the bird. Our first lesson in English writing in schools begins with the story of the Thirsty Crow.
Recently, I was amused to see what a ‘social phenomenon’ in nature the crow is. I was sitting at the Kolva Beach in Goa.
The sea roared at a distance. The evening was spread against the sky. The sun was slowly sinking into the ocean. It was an enchanting ambience.
Suddenly, the scene changed into an extraordinary, exceptionally rare phenomenon. A swarm of crows appeared in the sky. They alighted at the Kolva Beach one by one. Then came more and more crows, thousands of them. The sea-roar was drowned in their caw-cawing. They took bath in the small brook, drank water out of it, and then gradually disappeared, one by one, into the nearby grove of coconut trees.
Perchance I espied a crow with a broken wing, just able to move and fly a little.
He was helped and guided by a host of crows. As the light thickened, the crows escorted their comrade to safety. The old adage that blood is thicker than water may no longer be true in the case of men, but it was certainly true in the case of crows.
We need to learn a lot from crows.
They have a great community sense, social sense, family sense and filial bonding. They have no religion, no region, no race, no caste or creed. They are simply crows, and one crow is as true as another.