The Jungle

Posted by: Suhas Kumar on

 

©Suhas Kumar

 

 

Until the dark

let the kakad bark

as the  sun slips down where horizon ends

and the darkness descends

the jungle wakes up

to the howls of the jackals, the music of the crickets,

the hoots of the owl,

and then suddenly

 

to the pook of the cheetal

and the bellow of the sambar

 

I stiffen in my track

now as the twigs crack

under the footfalls of 'Baagh'

for the king who lurked hiding from his prey

in brown and grey

has been seen

and the jungle reverberates with lifesaving calls.

everyone of them alarming others

Beware don't fall

 

a zephyr rustles

through the moyan leaves

touching gently my cheeks

a snake slithers past my toes

brings sweat to my brows

Oh! it was so close

 

then like it all had begun,

suddenly  the jungle  goes quiet

Now it is only me and the heavenly light

not even a murmur is heard

Except the crickets' chord

 

and at this time I imagine the ghosts,

hear banshee behind my back

stopping in my track

brushing  aside the game my mind wants to play

I find a ledge overlooking the valley

from where I see the silhouettes of hills, thickets and trees,

a huge lake spread before me

washed in the silver that pours from the sky

and, looking at the  hoary moon

and counting  countless  stars, I

listen to the whispers of a gentle breeze

 

and all this happens in my crease

I am the jungle of Pench

 

©Suhas Kumar

 

Kakad- Barking deer

Moyan- Lannea coromandelica

Baagh - Tiger