Sunday, September 30, 2012


Cloaked in copperpod crown
a shaubeegi
sings the first strains
of a pre-dawn chorus
lifting gently the sheath of sleep.

Koels pick up the cue
in a relay…
and coo… and coo
till the criers’ crescendo
sounds a clarion call.

Under the cashew cover
prinias court daylight
in a happy dance
flapping wings, twitching tails
to a ceaseless warbling duet.

At siesta hour...
a wandering water-hen
wades into the bower
tip-toes the tangled growth
steals into my consciousness.

Twilight brings
a magpie robin, the bully
to a game of tag
chasing cheeky Indian robins
piping the close of a Day.

From its banyan post
a moon-eyed owlet lets out
a chuckle…
and keeps up the prattle
late into the dark night.

NOTE: Shaubeegi is an onomatopoeic name (in Hindi) for the Common Iora - a lovely, lovely, lovely little yellow bird - with music to match.