Lessons Learnt from a Squirrel
Sometime during the Treta Yuga,
Third of four cycles the world is destined to,
The warrior prince Ram found himself
At the tip of the Indian Peninsula.
Just across what we now know as the Palk Strait,
A tear shaped island gleamed ahead:
Land of Serendipity, happy coincidences.
A bridge had to be built
Across the mighty ocean
To reach the other side.
An army of monkeys set to work,
One pebble at a time
Forming beds of sand and gravel.
In the midst of all the chaos,
A tiny squirrel contributed its mite.
Small stones in its paws,
Patiently scurrying to and fro.
The warrior prince, epitome of compassion,
Gently stroked the squirrel,
The marks traced by his fingers
Became the stripes on the squirrel’s back.
I like to think of this tale;
It has the fragrance of my mother’s sari,
The splendour of an oil lamp lit at dusk
Its flame flickering in the wind,
But refusing to die.
So yes, I like to think of this tale,
When everything seems to fail
The Goliaths in my life making me feel insignificant,
And my worries as insurmountable as the ocean.
I think of the squirrel which taught me:
What is it you cannot face
When you have compassion and grace?