Sunday, 24 October 2010

right lighting conditions

a crow,
the full-black species we have in our countryside,
cawed at me from a bough
and i found
myself walking in the sun,
back-lit and sparkling
against the background of a sprinkling of wild flowers,
fresh from an early morning drizzle.

he clicked me now with both eyes intensly focussed
over his beaks,
now with the left eye and now with the right,
from different angles,
like a wildlife photographer
accidently encountering the tiger
in the forests
in the right lighting conditions.



Prabhakar said...


Balachandran V said...

'with the left eye now and now with the right, from different angles..'

I could even see the telelens mounted camera in the hands of the crow! Lovely!

kochuthresiamma p .j said...

nice poem.
i love crows - right from the kakey kakey koodevidey days, despite the the unniappams and other goodies it has snatched from me - even after i became an adult!guess it is the assocation with kerala and childhod.and i've hated the epithet carrion used with this bird.
have you read emily dickinson's poem on the crow?

P. Venugopal said...

Friends, I do not know whether the crow was trying to communicate something to me.
When I had typed out part of what I wanted to communicate through this piece, my wife called me from her mother's room asking me whether I would come down immediately. I posted what I had written thus far, switched off the computer and trotted down the steps to find the old lady seated in her chair frozen. She was dead, aged 92, the last nine years not knowing much of what was going around her.
The crow cawed at me thrice from one tree and had repeated the process three or four more times popping from one tree to another ahead of me all the way to the gates of my home on the final stretch of my morning walk. I had wondered why it found me so interesting...Certainly, there are levels of sensitivity we cannot comprehend?

kochuthresiamma p .j said...


my condolence.

P. Venugopal said...

thanks, madam, for the sympathy.
she was a very interesting character, a retired head mistress. you know how teachers are. they treat everyone as children to be bossed over, moulded and put on the right track. she had lived with me and my wife right from the time of our wedding in 1979. she was a bit disappointed in the beginning that her daughter had chosen me as life partner, and i don't know whether she had ever come round to accepting me as a reality in her close-walled world that had no space at all for anyone outside her daughter, son and their siblings... she and her daughter had a special bond. i think i was a good son-in-law, first, for not ever trying to break that bond and, second, for helping my wife to look after her with tenderness during her last nine years when she was totally bedridden.

Prabhakar said...

I've heard cows and dogs too behave strangely when someone in the house is facing death. Is there any scientific study that validates this phenomenon? Very interesting.

Prabhakar said...

My heartfelt condolences. May her soul rest in peace. You and your wife deserve praise for taking good care of her.

P. Venugopal said...

thanks, Prabhakar. i heard this morning that dolphins sense the outside environment in a different way. while interacting with human beings, i was told that dolphins can know from the aura of the the person concerned whether he is friendly or has violent intentions.

in a different context, i had talked about this with my friend Sashi. what he told me seems to have logic.

he noted that we human beings have five modes of sensing the outside environment: the sense of sight, the sense of hearing, the sense of smell, the sense of taste and the sense of touch. of these, only the senses of sight and hearing are prominent in most of us. even these we cannot usually draw entire benefit because of the distraction of thought. even when we look at something or listen to some sound, it doesn't fully register in our brain because our thought disturbs the reception of the signals. only when we keep the antenna clean of the noise from thought are we fully alert.

it should be possible for us to sharpen all the five senses to a higher level than at present and even explore the other frequencies of sensing the outside environment by watching ourselves and tuning ourselves to the signals that are indeed around us.

seems exciting, isn't it?

kochuthresiamma p .j said...

just remembered that long time back i had posted a blog on superstition. very elementary, but has echoes of the comments here inclusing yours.