Miserable Migrants

a poem by Suresh Menon

I waded through the meadows and rested underneath a peepal tree,
when a parrot flew over and rested on a branch and made a squeak.
The meadows were green, and a cool breeze blew amidst the hot sun,
I was slipping into a trance, underneath the cool shade of the tree.

The parrot then uttered angrily “Why did you drive me away from my home?”
When she was building her nest, I asked her “Are you not in your home, it seems your own?”
The parrot uttered again, but with anger “This is not my home, you drove me away”
Pat came my reply, “I did not drive you; I don’t even know where your home is”

She wailed, “It may not be you, but your men who destroyed our home,
The big grandma tree was a dwelling for our fleet, from times unknown.
With sorrow, I asked her, “Was it a wood cutter who drove you all from your home?”,
She replied , “Wood cutter was one, but others were a powerful mobile tower
Harming us with radiations and a heinous realtor who wiped our “Grandma tree”.

I lamented with tears in my eyes, “Don’t you worry here, none will drive you away,
Here you are safe, it’s a hamlet, where men will love you all parakeets.
No harm, no cruelty, no selfish motives here, unlike your yester home in the metropolis
Don’t you get angry, don’t you cry here, for you will be safe with your young ones.

I will be here in this hamlet, be one among you to protect you avians, and your habitat,
To make you all feel cosy and warm to say, “This is my home, you are my friend forever”.
She fluttered her wings with joy as she saw her soulmate flying in, love was in the air,
She merrily sung in her squeaky voice, “This is my home, you are my friend forever”.