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Magpie Captured by Akram on Sony Alpha 350…. other snaps on my blog would look extremely pheeka, lifeless and destitute-like, grainy, in comparison with this photo as captured by my friend…well, I am a poor Advertising professional {Vs obnoxiously-highly paid Soft-ware guys whose hearts palpitate constantly over Pink slips} with a glamorous sounding title, armed with sturdy-ready for tough Indian terrain-yet subtly designed Nokia N-series….but what matters most is the whole thought of freezing a moment, which truly belongs to some other wonderful creature in this world…..more on this trip

 

Quite interesting concept! and extravagant too! I came across this article {link : Up, Up and Away in the New York Times}….it reads “Some clients paid 100s of 1000s of dollars for their treehouses; most were around $70,000; many cost far less. The most extravagant projects demanded sites with multiple trees – “You want to be in the trees, not on top of them” ….One caveat for anyone considering life among the boughs : Treehouses move. A lot. Charley Greenwood, an engineer who supplies specialty parts for treehouses, lives full time in 700 sq feet 14 feet up in an Oregon evergreen grove.  He likens it to living on “a moored houseboat”. “You have to be comfortable with a certain amount of horizontal travel” is how he puts it.

This article felt like a refreshing respite from all those hideous looking representatives of an inescapable fervent rage that we witness or observe or drive past in all the four metros, mini metros and youthful satellite cities like Gurgaon etc in India : endless, never ending tall stories of glass structures inspired by Mathematics fundamentals rising their heads at maddening a pace amidst dusty and wholly choked up & distorted patches, we call them roads made of base materials of inferior quality. While humans long to go back to the lap of mother nature and draw immense comfort from the serenity that only trees and lakes could promise, at a premium, our tiny blissful fellow-creatures like birds (Sparrows, Parrots, tiny black birds which constantly circle around the shopping malls in Gurgaon – I don’t know their name etc) appear to be happy with their decision of shifting their wonderful nests / homes from the swinging tree branches to the groove tracks of the buildings made of concrete. Wonder, do these lovely birds feel displaced from their natural habitat by idiotic humans {doubtful, as they seem to have ignored the trees retained as a part of some nonsensical landscape} or feel extremely comfortable in their new concrete homes which are bound to give better shelter and protection from various elements? You should believe me, I could not stop admiring the sheer beauty of the nests/homes built or designed by this huge group of tiny black birds…these guys used thrown away pieces of wires, wads of cotton, bits and pieces of paper, a few branches etc etc… 

 

 

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Watching the birds chirp on the trees is Out, watching them beam their musicals from the grooves/slots/ceilings of the buildings is the In-thing!   

 {Mumbai}

When I looked up, the deceptively prominent construct of the shady tree looked down at me! I recalled Nemerov’s poem, especially, the lines “You may succeed in learning many trees….but their comprehensive silence stays the same..”

Before you can learn the trees, you have to learn
The language of the trees. That’s done indoors,
Out of a book, which now you think of it
Is one of the transformations of a tree.
The words themselves are a delight to learn,
You might be in a foreign land of terms
Like samara, capsule, drupe, legume and pome,
Where bark is papery, plated, warty or smooth.

But best of all are the words that shape the leaves –
Orbicular, cordate, cleft and reniform –
And their venation – palmate and parallel –
And tips – acute, truncate, auriculate.

Sufficiently provided, you may now
Go forth to the forests and the shady streets
To see how the chaos of experience
Answers to catalogue and category.

Confusedly. The leaves of a single tree
May differ among themselves more than they do
From other species, so you have to find,
All blandly says the book, “an average leaf.”

Example, the catalpa in the book
Sprays out its leaves in whorls of three
Around the stem; the one in front of you
But rarely does, or somewhat, or almost;

Maybe it’s not catalpa? Dreadful doubt.
It may be weeks before you see an elm
Fanlike in form, a spruce that pyramids,
A sweetgum spiring up in steeple shape.

Still, pedetemtim as Lucretious says,
Little by little, you do start to learn;
And learn as well, maybe, what language does
And how it does it, cutting across the world

Not always at the joints, competing with
Experience while cooperating with
Experience, and keeping an obstinate
Intransigence, uncanny, of its own.

Think finally about the secret will
Pretending obedience to Nature, but
Invidiously distinguishing everywhere,
Dividing up the world to conquer it.

And think also how funny knowledge is:
You may succeed in learning many trees
And calling off their names as you go by,
But their comprehensive silence stays the same.

 

 

 

 Yahoo! Green Logo

Yahoo Green Article

 …..Convinced the planet’s oil supply is dwindling and the world’s economies are heading for a crash, some people around the country are moving onto homesteads, learning to live off their land, conserving fuel and, in some cases, stocking up on guns they expect to use to defend themselves and their supplies from desperate crowds of people who didn’t prepare. The exact number of people taking such steps is impossible to determine, but anecdotal evidence suggests that the movement has been gaining momentum in the last few years.

These energy survivalists are not leading some sort of green revolution meant to save the planet. Many of them believe it is too late for that, seeing signs in soaring fuel and food prices and a faltering U.S. economy, and are largely focused on saving themselves.

Some are doing it quietly, giving few details of their preparations — afraid that revealing such information as the location of their supplies will endanger themselves and their loved ones. They envision a future in which the nation’s cities will be filled with hungry, desperate refugees forced to go looking for food, shelter and water.

“There’s going to be things that happen when people can’t get things that they need for themselves and their families,” said Lynn-Marie, who believes cities could see a rise in violence as early as 2012.

These survivalists believe in “peak oil,” the idea that world oil production is set to hit a high point and then decline. Scientists who support idea say the amount of oil produced in the world each year has already or will soon begin a downward slide, even amid increased demand. But many scientists say such a scenario will be avoided as other sources of energy come in to fill the void.

On the PeakOil.com Web site, where upward of 800 people gathered on recent evenings, believers engage in a debate about what kind of world awaits.

Some members argue there will be no financial crash, but a slow slide into harder times. Some believe the federal government will respond to the loss of energy security with a clampdown on personal freedoms. Others simply don’t trust that the government can maintain basic services in the face of an energy crisis….{Link : Read on}

I am scared yet curious.  I am not depressed, but disenchanted. Though, I strongly believe in that fundamental biological survival instinct that drives humans to seek a level of certainty, comfort and security for selves and their loved ones, even in adverse conditions,  I feel this specific one is going to be more daunting task than ever before. The current generation of humans, which I belong to, represents a human system embedded in comfort and would certainly feel helpless and rudderless when it is confronted with life-demanding situations. We nibble at the natural calamities happening around and feel truly sorry for the massive human damage they result in, for a few moments, everyday, and go back to our lives, our work loads, daily brand assignments or projects. We could do more than just reacting meekly to the traumatising acts being demonstrated by Mother Nature and her invincible spirit (isn’t she  distraughted and shocked by the way humans are disturbing her state of equilibrium? Her pristine tranquillity and gentleness?), we could consciously insert a few tiny alterations in our lives, do not we know that Small things go a long way. Such as request the cabbie to switch off the engine while waiting for the traffic light to turn green {now that we are blessed with longer traffic-jams, traffic-pile ups}, walk within the neighbourhood shopping(lack of parking areas in & around the crammed shopping centres in India, anyway, forces most of us to walk), depend on our legs more than anything else, feel the endurance and energy soaring in the body while walking, just be kind to the green little things called TREES, touch their aged trunks to feel soothed, try to be kind to animals…..there are many more little things we could do everyday, every moment. It feels good to realise how humane we could become.

My roomie and I remained silent for a while, after reading this article on Yahoo. And then plunged into a light-hearted (we were serious, somewhere, deep down inside) conversation (I was getting ready for my ritual Oil massage on that Sunday) …..we kept aside, the widely mentioned, piece of old wisdom “Necessity is the mother of invention” and the human’s ability to invent new things or to finetune the existing technology to meet the future needs, we mulled over what we could do at an individual level, how drastically different things would appear, if we were to face such hard times…  ”as a vegetarian, I could easily switch to light eating patterns. Carnivorous humans have to brace for harder beats. My system is kinda getting conditioned to the days without huge and elaborated meals, it started relishing basic food, courtesy, me being  far away from the cocooning kind of comfort that mom’s delicious food offers and that indecipherable taste of our office canteen food. Perhaps, I should take a break from Advertising for some 6 months and learn home remedies, cooking etc from mom, and equip myself with some basic functional skills, which may come in handy later.  I truly enjoy Washing clothes {if adequate supply of water, the life-essential, is ensured) and Dishwashing. So this set of home-bound skills, basic skills would certainly help me in applying for a part-time-sophisticated maid slot at affluent castles. I can bicycle across my life, and would invest my hard-earned money in Sunscreens which, anyway, are not of intense usage against the relentless strength of the morning-afternoon-post siesta-early evening-late evening Sun. I have to keep myself fit and healthy by moving my limbs easily and living on basic things, indulgences would soon become a rarity, I may have to learn a few combative acts to protect those ever-dwindling life-resources and self from the city-neighbourhood-food violence.  My skills lie in Brand Thinking/Advertising, which may not find much enthusiastic response from the society. …I could be an affordable body-poster, like I carry around brand advertisements on my body or my T-shirts or hang those boards around my slender neck…but my advantage would be nullified, if the world decides to move towards Close Community kind of setup, where Advertising/Brands  have no space. Everything – a new introduction, a new sale in the nearby orchard etc. is communicated to everyone within the community….Entertainment would go back to the stories around the fire-place, the fire-places under the twinkling stars and dark skies would become the ‘social-glue”….beautifying and keeping self attractive to the opposite sex would continue to be the basic need, so learning a few skills in that area is certainly an advantage.  It’s time to dump the decision of marrying a man and have him father my cherubic baby…….as long as the body is fed with some basic food, the body is exerted over a defined task or a piece of work that defines one’s identity in the society, nothing else matters. The so-perceived lifestyle essentials vanish somehow into thin air….” well, the conversation trailed off into silence as sweat began to flow across our foreheads from exertion.

But, we are sliding quite slowly and subtly into harder times.

 

shade of a tamarind tree across the road – Black Colored Open Branch structure and Young tender leaves dressed in vibrant shades of light Green (Bangalore)   

  She’s got a Mango in the garden. Fresh, Sour, Tangy and wicked Mango designed to stimulate one’s senses. 

Have you ever “Touched a Tree”?  Walk through the trees, with your eyes wide open, run your fingers over the aged, hardened, weathered barks, lean in close to a tree and gently rub your cheek against it….You feel the EARTH for a fleeting second. DO NOT KILL A LIVING THING

And you would love to extend a serene interaction between you and the lake/the water body, as you stand in front of such a soothing display of nature…. {A Lake and a Temple in Hosur – Village}

 {In continuation with :The Campaign against “Unnecessary Destruction” }       

 
 
 

 

Shorn, I rejoice in what was taken from me.

 

       

 
 
 

What can the moonlight do with my new shape 
But trace and retrace its miracle of order?
I stand, waiting for the strange reaction
Of insects who knew me in my larger self,
Unkempt, in a naturalness I did not love.
Even the dog’s voice rings with a new echo,
And all the little leaves I shed are singing,

Singing to the moon of shapely newness.

 

 

Somewhere what I lost I hope is springing  
To life again. The roofs, astonished by me,
Are taking new bearings in the night, the owl
is crying for a further wisdom, the lilac
Putting forth its strongest scent to find me.
Butterflies, like sails in grooves, are winging
Out of the water to wash me, wash me.
         

 
 
 

Now, I am stirring like a seed in China.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a torn paper might seal up its side, 
Or a streak of water stitch itself to silk,
And disappear, my wound has been my healing,
And I am made more beautiful by losses.
See the flat water in the distance nodding
Approval, the light that fell in love with statues,
Seeing me alive, turn its motion toward me.

 

 

 

{The Poem is written by Howard Moss, is quintessentially a NEW YORK poet-Sophisticated, skeptical, witty – despite his cosmopolitan style, the enduring cycles of nature- the seeds and seasons of growth and decay….he searched mysteries in the everyday}

In India, unfortunately, foolish humans who are responsible for basic transportation / local commutation  services, do not believe in “Proper Tree Pruning”. They just have to address that repugnant itch to destroy trees, chop down them! They just need a tiny reason to bring a representative of “Green Perspectives” to a halt. The real estate magnets feel this surge to create grotesque & horrid looking flats, vertical developments, the modern citadels of conspicuous consumption-Shopping malls.   A few of these modern constructions, ironically, flaunt names borrowed from Nature / Trees. I need not highlight this as a highly ridiculous act by humans, as it is blatantly explicit! 

 

 

 

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{Earlier posts from me on this critical issue links :The Campaign against “Unnecessary Destruction” sustains its momentum on my blog} 

They are killing you. You are dying.
But you still smell like green leaves, pink flowers.20102007724.jpg
When I see a murder like that how can I take my eyes
off it ? Yesterday, you were a tree crafted, many seasons ago,
at the left side of a street, by some kind hand.  There
were no roads, not many cars then. So no one felt the need
to kill you to widen them. Yesterday, like many mornings and evenings,
you left your doors and windows wide open for many birds, small,
medium, large, extra large, which usually kick off their respective music
tours in the blue skies. Your world was so randomly arranged, so
chaotic, yet so irresistibly beautiful. We, bastard people, secretly used to
watch you jealously as we sloped off to some cubicles. Today, those
men are showing us bits and pieces of bedrooms, living rooms, balconies,
corridors, swings of your hidden world. It looks so different from
my world of painted faces who, aimlessly, hang around tall, hideous blocks
of steel, granite, marble and other weird materials. Beyond a broken
village gate, mountains are gasping for breath. I can’t believe that
I have nothing to say about  my world which beaming at its flat
tummy. Someone urges me, for God’s sake, woman, say something
about these sallow faces, broken hearts, dismantled wings,
disrupted homes. I do not like one more huge batch of homeless.
Have you ever wondered where do birds, little worms, butterflies,
insects, frightened for their lives, flutter or crawl away?
Do you know anything sadder than tears, which flow down silently? 
Who hears the sweeping emptiness when a tree, with bewildered eyes,
curls into the arms of death ? I am trembling with sadness.
I do not like this treeless winter. I do not like a mid-autumn filled
with no yellow detonations. I do not like this stern hand dictating
all of us in a classroom, to lean how to deal with
“Remembering things from the past”

18092007645.jpg revived post!

…the old man who guards that grey-stone building collected a huge bunch of “Silent Assassins” for me. They were caught amidst their mission through the night…am hinting at long-stemmed tubular Night Queen flowers who serenade all mortals, the lonely streets, the relentlessly falling rain and drape everyone in their intoxicating veil in the morning…..these lovely things I come across are kind of rejuvenating pauses I indulge self with. Walk through the streets of life without them would certainly be a dissenting march. Can you sense a sweet disruption in the air?

It kisses your cheeks, bores through your flesh, with its breasts sodden with fragrance that becomes more intense as the dusk falls over pallid faces. It loosens its delirious robes to expose those stripped layers of its skin, roams through the backyards, wobbles like a drunkard at the door, rustles past the busy lanes slapping at the tired human faces. Something more than that, it crawls under the sweat-drenched eyelids, tickles the nipples under the clothes, pauses at the dark corners thick with the stench of urine. Watch it beating hard at the doorsteps of a cheap hotel, mocking the beggar on the pavements, whistling along with that bunch of youngsters. Indeed, shameless a figure that lives on everything it comes across, and leaves everything at its own pace. The delicate aromatic facade crackles with vengeance out of their slim waists trampled or broken with the wind. I am enamored by this swell, the pale dead bodies, the tubular long stemmed Night-Queen flowers perfuming the evening.

Can you sense a sweet disruption in the air?flrsep001.jpg 

Google says these flowers belong to the Indian Cork Tree with the Botanical Name : Millingtonia Hortensis, with a mission to Transform I say they are my dear “Silent Assassins” who had me walk up the path to my car…sweet little things fallen all over, seducing me into their deep fragrance and beam at me, a midgety greedy creature who crams all her books and car with the fallen flowers…I turn back time and again to have a glimpse of those slender fragrant bodies, browned by muddy waters, trampled over by heartless feet! Humbled I say, I fall on my knee, I plead thee, how many fragrant bodies I can carry!  

Those fallen flowers leave the chaotic inhuman world, but their persistent and stubborn fragrance stays on staining the lanes! What a prima ballerina like performance these flowers give, when they are falling down, twirling their slender waists many a time in the breeze.18092007649.jpg

{Earlier posts from me on this critical issue links :The Campaign against “Unnecessary Destruction” sustains its momentum on my blog} 

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Neglect it
Criticise it to its face
Say how it kills the light
Traps all the rubbish
Bores you with its green

Continually 
Harden your heart
Then 
Cut it down close
To the root as possible
 

Forget it 
For a week or a month
Return with an axe 
Split it with one blow
Insert a stone

To keep the wound wide open.   {Poem by Eibhlin Nic Eochaidh}.

While on one side of the fence, 14082007507.jpgthe so-affirmed project towards a less garbled and a more organised commutation for the hoi polloi in & around my city is being carried out with such intense fervor and rigorous penchant, with shafts of sunlight slanting downward through the sturdily-built shoulders of trees with profound heads, drops of water glistening happily on the leaves so far away from the reach of nonsensical and intrusive human hands, the whole courtyard bathed in golden hued green 14082007506.jpgwater dripping down from the trees, with a sense of abandonment on the other side of the fence. Birds came out of hiding to disrupt the serenity of the moment. Things around me, certainly are continuing their downslide from “bad” to “worse” to “irritably worse”,  18082007513.jpg the wrinkles on my forehead caused by them, disappear with minimal effort when our pet-cum-younger brother Genie is around. That corner under the Bounganvillea canopy on our terrace is his retreat!

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On Killing A Tree
It takes much time to kill a tree,
Not a simple jab of the knife
Will do it. It has grown
Slowly consuming the earth,
Rising out if it, feeding
Upon its crust, absorbing
Years of sunlight, air, water,
And out of its leprous hide
Sprouting leaves.
So hack and chop
But this alone won’t do it.
Not so much pain will do it.
The bleeding bark will heal
And from close to the ground
Will rise curled green twigs,
Miniature boughs
Which if unchecked will expand again
To former size.
No,
The root is to be pulled out –
Out of the anchoring earth;
It is to be roped, tied,
And pulled out-snapped out
Or pulled out entirely,
Out from the earth-cave,
And the strength of the tree exposed,
The source, white and wet,
The most sensitive, hidden
For years inside the earth.
Then the matter
Of scorching and choking
In sun and air,
Browning, hardening,
Twisting, withering,
And then it is done.

{Rajiv shared this poem with me. The Poem – To kill a tree, is written by Gieve Patel}

{link:Canopies are destructed relentlessly}  brokencanopy1.jpgcanopy.jpg

I’ll lie here and learn How, over their ground,
Trees make a long shadow And a light sound.
–  Louise Bogan, 1898-1970

The wonder is that we can see these trees and not wonder more.
–   Ralph Waldo Emerson

Who does not feel that splendor above one’s head when one walks through layers of tranquility blended with playfulness? That understated elegance does not intrude upon one’s territories, yet, some unseen gentle hand breaks stranglehold of the fort in one’s heart effortlessly. It becomes so easy for one to shed the layers of stubbornness, irritable aggression and stand naked under this amazing world of shadow, shade and shelter. A silent protest marches past in the streets of one’s heart  when humans attempt to destruct such a beatific world, which has been sitting, standing, waving its hands along with the breeze, drenching, shivering, caressing lonely hearts etc  for many seasons. A silent protest marches past in the streets of one’s heart when humans attempt to write a sad conclusion for a life that has been soothing an experience for many skins of varied hues. A silent protest marches past in the streets of one’s heart when humans attempt to split open the heart that would never bleed like the ones beat in us. It is a loss and a personal anguish that cannot be explained in words. Most dead trunks carry letters on their broken arms and limbs, which notify how sad, many feet winced for a fraction of second. I am not sure, how many of us succeeded in reading the letters and understanding the contents of the same. I am still not sure when would the silent protest gain a voice that could be heard by the world around? 

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