The evening sky saw a group of vultures sitting on a lone tree wrapped up in a peculiarly intense discussion.
'The guardians of the death. That's what we should call ourselves.' Vulture on top branch chimed in. The vultures were looking for a new name for their tribe. 'No! We don't guard the dead, we eat the dead. We eat dead things that no one eats.'
The vulture perched beside him replied. 'We clean up the mess, we are better than the rest.'
And finally, they decided on the name - The guardians of the land. .
They had the perfect view as they saw the Lion hunt its prey. It was a sight that made their eyes hungry. Opportunist was the perfect word to describe them as all it took was a second of distraction for them to pounce on the dead animal's flesh. Nothing made them more happy than the smell of blood. It had been an hour and the waiting game was still on. Suddenly a group of hyenas arrived to steal the Lion's prey. The Vultures above already started laughing imagining their face covered in blood. .
The photo depicts two different futures of Earth in one frame, dried trees and raptor. The sign of devastation! If there is life after death then I would love to die of starving. But it is not so! Therefore it is better to grow trees and avoid an unpleasant death. When we heal the earth, we heal ourself. Death is the truth! But It is beautiful when it is natural. So do not force the nature to take life and become guilty. .
Every vulture has its ugly profile as if God hurriedly did not quill its features. Yet it’s pure voyage with inflamed eyes that see the dead as they leave the deceased; it alights amid the dry around the hilly peaks. The featherless faces appear like a hanging cloak from the face of the sky. There in the middle of the fields of death, the wings are like an impulsive shady cuirass, cruising like an ancient idol connected in air. They go into the sky swathed in fine light watching souls depart the colossal earth. .
They are waiting, hungry, ready to rip me apart. They want me to give up. Ma, they scare me.
They keep inching closer, watching, waiting for the last sign of resistance. Ma, where will I find strength today? I can't give up, I must live my life.
Those vultures on the internet baying for my blood, those vultures on the phone with their anonymous threatening calls, those uniformed vultures with their rule books and feigned helplessness.
Ma, give me the will to survive another day, my fight has to go on..
The last gun's boom shattered the evening's eerie silence. Smoke billowed from the horizon. An orange blaze was raging hungrily. Sharp wails rent the air. Corpses lay strewn, occupying every inch of the arid landscape. The stench of death was overwhelming. The trees could not bear it, so they had shed their foliage long back. Darkness enveloped.
The vultures appeared, slowly circling the landscape. Perched on the dead branches, they surveyed the scene. And pursed their lips in quiet delight. They knew a feast awaited them. Tonight. Tomorrow night. And many more nights.
For they knew it was war. .
"This is the best place to be in ! We never have shortage of food here," gushed the younger vulture to the committee as they eyed yet another rotting carcass. And it was true, the place was always abundant with fresh supply of dead meat now and then. Enthusiastic about their new find, the younger vulture set off to invite its friends to share the meal. "Which place do I say is this? The place where the creature kills its own kind?". The oldest vulture calmly replied, " Humans! They call it the war zone "..
Five of them perched atop dry dying tree holding position firm and looked down on the young one. She was sitting alone on a tree, oblivious of the surroundings, gazing at the sky. Aloofness suits her. She does not follow norms, chirped one. Objection and desire to stoop her independence was visible in their gaze. This new breed, they don't know how to respect the experienced, 'One day her ego will be torn apart. ' Venting their frustration they became quiet, still observing her 'gather more discourages'. She by then content with her gazing flew to the only river in the desert for heart full swim..
"Dad look... that woman is being abducted... he's probably flying her out of India, far from her home. She looks all alone and vulnerable, let's go and help her."
"Yes I see that son, let them be."
"How can you say that dad? Don't you always tell us the story of our ancestor who bravely fought the evil king of Lanka to save the noble princess? Shouldn't we do the same?"
"Yes my son I did... but those were different times... however in today's situation, she's probably safer outside India. Let her go.".
PaK1: "Dude, why do I have the feeling that somebody should be cheering down there?".
PaK2: "I know, right? We should be glitzy dressed and beautiful."
PaK3 and PaK4: "We feel like dancing and squawking. As a duo."
Leader: "Guys, better watch out for some food. We don't have time for dreams."
Little did they know that in their next reincarnation, the five souls would meet again and they would become the most beloved K-pop band in the world. Their debut song, "Unwanted tree" wooed people.
It had been Leader's obsession from his previous life.
His stubborn persistence paid off. .
“What are you thinking? When will this peasant die?”
“Because we are vultures... and we survive off dead meat.”
“It’s our destiny that we have to live over someone’s death. Nature made us like this. And Mother Nature only provides food for us. We never killed anyone for food.”
“But we wait for their death. Drought is a feast time for us.”
“We are scavengers. We clean earth. Everyone hates us not thinking even once about our feeling. Even we have our heart above stomach... unlike politicians.”.
“So, this is it” whispered Jatayu.
The tree just smiled.
Jatayu closed his eyes one last time reminiscing all things the tree had done for him; how it had helped him his entire life. With home, family, nurturing and protecting his children. Even when the little ones left his nest. There were so many memories. He was indebted to the tree.
But now it was his time to go. The tree was finally free. Jatayu had decided to stay by his old friend.
How are you so selfless? Jatayu mumbled, teary eyed.
The tree smiled again, grunting “WE… ARE…. GROOT.”