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Of Crows And Men -- Flash Fiction

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by ojaantrik, May 19, 2017.

  1. ojaantrik

    ojaantrik Finest Post Winner

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    I am either a schizophrenic or a downright hypocrite when it comes to my attitude towards animals. At the same time that I cajole my dog-hating wife to allow me a puppy in the house, I would definitely be sorry to see Kentucky Fried Chicken pack up and leave the country.

    I have nothing against birds though. The cuckoo drives me to distraction on many a moonlit night. The kingfisher's perfect somersault leaves me speechless. I have tarried patiently by peacocks for an opportunity to watch them dance. The magnificent curve of a flamingo's neck fascinates me and, quite unpardonably, I adore the sight of little chicks scampering about.

    Yet there are boundaries I will not cross. I do not enjoy the company of rodents, of spiders, of cockroaches, and, among birds, of crows. I detest crows. I am repulsed by their looks, their raucous caws and their untidy nests. Besides, dirty fish-bones on my balcony, along with other filth, are daily reminders of their slovenly habits.

    I was more than a little surprised, therefore, by the agony I felt the other morning, to discover a group of little boys shriek with delight as they pulled at a string fastened firmly to the claws of a baby crow. It had not yet learnt to fly properly and must have crashed on the pavement during one of its training sessions. The miserable thing believed that the way to freedom lay in flapping its wings, which it did with all its might, much to the merriment of its captors. As it was dragged along the rough surface of the pavement, it parted its beak and cawed in a hoarse whisper, revealing the raw redness of a mouth unaccustomed to anything other than the infinite tenderness of a feeding mother.

    It took me all the powers of persuasion to put a stop to this horror and make the boys untie the string.

    Later on in the afternoon, I searched for the crow on my way out for a stroll. The local presswallah pointed it out to me as it perched precariously on a heap of rubble close to the edge of the pavement. I went near to have a closer look and check if the string was truly detached. The bird recoiled in panic and, losing its foothold, tumbled down the slope right into the middle of the street.

    Just then a Maruti van whizzed past, far too close to the spot where the hapless crow had landed. I winced in fear and closed my eyes. When I opened them at last, prepared mentally to absorb a gory spectacle, I could hardly believe what I saw. The creature was wobbling back towards the pavement on a return trip to life!

    I gazed at the scene and found myself wondering how soon it would pay a visit to my balcony.

    And then I winced again, this time in disgust.
     
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  2. iyerviji

    iyerviji IL Hall of Fame

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    Glad the crow was saved
     
  3. ojaantrik

    ojaantrik Finest Post Winner

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  4. satchitananda

    satchitananda Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Couldn't help laugh at the last sentence OJ-da. Enjoyed the exquisite piece of writing and I could visualise the cruelty of those depraved beings which chose to hurt a baby bird for some perverted pleasure. I could not help admiring the tenacity and resilience of the baby crow. Last but not least, I can never stop being amazed at the way you can change from serious to light-hearted or vice-versa. :)
     
  5. ojaantrik

    ojaantrik Finest Post Winner

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    Thank you so much Satchi. This is what keeps me alive despite my age!
    oj-da
     
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  6. Kamla

    Kamla Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear J-da,

    Such a simple happening but told so interestingly.

    I would not have enjoyed the anecdote so much if you had not intervened and saved the poor bird. Nice of you to have kept tabs on the baby bird's welfare and agree with Satchi...Looks like the bird came blessed with a boon of full life even if it is only to mess up your balcony!

    Forgot why snippets was a special forum.....it is because of writers like you!

    L, Kamla
     
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  7. shyamala1234

    shyamala1234 Platinum IL'ite

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    Dear Oj sir,
    We heard cuckoo's singing, enjoyed kingfisher's somersault, peacock dancing and flamingos as well.
    Isn't life always full of contradictions or dwandas(Telugu word)? It is. In our mind's eye we love somethings, some people and not so much with some. No logic or rationality. It is just like that.
    Though you dislike crows you saved it.
    , showed concern and even want it to be in your balcony! Nothing is absolute in this world!
    Enjoyed reading it.
    Syamala
     
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  8. ojaantrik

    ojaantrik Finest Post Winner

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    Dear Kamla,

    Wonderful to hear from you after a long gap!! Glad that you liked this post. You are right. This is indeed a true story and what I remember vividly is how the bird reacted when I approached it. It had no way of distinguishing between a friend and a foe!! This happens to humans as well. Often we are not entirely sure what lies behind the smiles that greet us.

    Cheers.

    oj-da
     
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  9. ojaantrik

    ojaantrik Finest Post Winner

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    Yes Syamala,

    Contradictions are a part of our existence. And how are you repaid for your kindness? There is a crow nest on the tree right in front of my balcony. I try to peep into it with a camera once in a while. But the mother crow is so suspicious, that she begins to caw harshly and leaves the nest like a missile and tries to attack me! Crows are not friendly creatures, but there should be a way to win their trust. One can perhaps leave food for them on the balcony. If this is done on a regular basis and they manage to recognize you, a friendship might well develop. Don't know in what state they will leave the balcony though!

    oj
     
  10. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Do I have to say anything more? God bless the eternal crow! It represents generations of my ancestors. Feeding a crow is tantamount to feeding our dead ancestors!
    Sri
     
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