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(The streets are silent, the air hung fresh and the pace of human life has come to a dead halt; humans caged at home left to watch through the windows, at the rhythms and vibrations of nature. In fact, the nature had never played a significant influence in the landscape of our minds.  Though it sounds satirical, the coronavirus pandemic has allowed humans to watch the secrets of natural surroundings with a fresh set of eyes.)

Beyond the curtains, I see faint darkness blending with the silvery glow dramatizing the thick silent night; I have been mentally bleached and tired and disoriented through forty-five days. It’s the curse of coronavirus pandemic apocalyptically shaming the world.   

I see the pure night curiously hushed something like what children fall to after a rough shout of a teacher. Everything looked so spooky, so still, as if they weren’t another living soul for miles. It’s so unnatural, at times felt so intimidating too. 

Forty-five days of enforced isolation, millions seemed accustomed to lockdown mode of life-style: cars, motorbikes, autos, bicycles, trucks gathering dust, engines dried up for want of firing up. It humbled the roads, the lanes, streets. Where the paths coordinating the concrete towers seemed clean, dustless, and sobered with gratitude. The standalone trees were swaying, rustling as if singing a tune for themselves for the gift of fresh air for lungs, clad with bright greenness, their transient beauty rocking on the empty neighborhoods’.

What a freakish turn of events: where I stare at the plants standing erect with confidence, their stems oozing lively esteem, the leaves lit with glamour in the mornings, and later by sunset rippling with golden hues. It’s their posturing boldly with strength and trust that amazes me; where I imagine they speak their minds, hailing the stroke of providence, “You now look at the bind where the humans seen caged indoors and squat grieved for weeks; we see it as a punitive action for the damage you humans have unleashed on the living world”. 

But for me, it has become a pleasant routine to take in from the terrace; the restful foliage and bushes wearing the brightened costumes lit up the summer mornings. They seem to breathe easily, smiling heartily with of riot of relief.

It has been over six weeks in self-isolation, I have nothing else to do, camera slung around I quietly walk across; something like Russell Crowe did in the Gladiator movie after the climax, touching each green leaf, delicate petals, feeling the swish of soft grass. Often I feel tempted to sprawl in the grass, watching the clear skies above and the muted world around.  At times I lazed in the grass, a rush of untroubled wits; with a child-like casualness, I tickle myself – I never remember doing anything like this before. 

Meanwhile, I overhear sharp voices from flowers blooming in the compound where I live, speaking a different language of newfound cheerful autonomy.  I could only faintly grasp their surging emotions of wildness, of free-will as I listened to the purple petals arguing about the intricate artwork of designs stood out against the golden tones of the evening sun. I gape at how they have come alive in a joyous dance; the backlit blush of purples like simmering of liquid colours. I felt pleased with the images gently swinging and dancing on my close-up lens as I adjusted the shutter close on them.

I found a tuft of flowers in a flutter of surprise, enjoying their tranquility, refilling their lungs with fresh air. There is something in their soft prancing that have become one in harmony with the span of blue skies as blossoms swung in clusters, happily shocked, hearing about weeks of peace and quietness descended among their vicinities. 

Sleep was still heavy on my eyes, but my senses suddenly have come alert to take on the day –dreary, insipid hours of scary isolation: an onslaught on ears – the persistent drab on TV – of coronavirus statistics.

The streets are silent, the air hanging fresh as waters drawn from a well and the pace of human life has come to a dead halt; humankind sitting at home left to blink incredulously, through the windows, at the rhythms and vibrations of nature, the invisible creations we are surrounded with. The elements we blindly have ignored: the sky, the stars, the birds, the trees, the flowers, the streams; they never played a significant influence in the landscape of our minds. Though it sounds satirical, the coronavirus pandemic has allowed humans to look hard at the secrets of natural surroundings with a fresh set of eyes. 

The bird’s songs swam through the window to let me know; wake up and cheer up! It was like hailing me to hang on to the sights and sounds in the air about my home. I further supposed the tweets promised a melodic refill to calm the monotony I was passing through. One quick ear to the sounds I could make out the rhythmical cuckoo song, so high pitched, so catchy, perhaps a desperate romantic exchange between two mates. 

I shuffled out, but excited to hunt the source of these soulful pleas from the thick of the trees; save the leaves flapping in warm sunlight, I couldn’t detect where the cuckoo birds roosted. But it got me thinking, briefly, how eager I’m for just one glimpse to spot them ‘calling their loved ones.’ I realized I started liking the youthfulness of my morning pursuit.

I tried to figure out, ‘did I ever hang on the terrace, loitered in the mornings to listen to the love songs of two cuckoos, hidden somewhere in branches.’ I assumed it strange while enjoying and being allured by this birdsong activity, having attracted to the elusive winged lovers. I felt sincerely surprised how the communication of the romantic birds brought a purpose to otherwise a dull day, elevated my spirits, made me feel light, and saw me in a frame of mind to write something worthwhile. Scroll a few words how the feathered friends, indeed, fill our days with happier moods allowing to be recharged with perfect emotional refreshment.       

Almost closing in two months of living in isolation, confined to indoors, while enjoying my tripod and camera as a versatile ‘man Friday,’ a realization rather I should say a revelation opened up for me. “We have to see nature’s conservation as something we can snuggle up when life goes rough and tough. There is a truth that I captured in my camera as I walked around my school compound, while I held to the glory of the objects in the evening sunlight. That the natural environs that surround us are far more meaningful, more therapeutic, and far more valuable than the money that we chase and madly fight about –dismissing the family and health. If we could appreciate nature’s safe havens the way we love our professions, our selfish ends, we might get one more chance to make the world healthier, worry-free, and safeguard our family and our elders. Optimistically, we never have to witness, ever again, the horrid days and deaths of the Covid-19 pandemic. 


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