Sunday, June 12, 2016

It is an awfully bloody time for scavengers

After the long, dark, days in these northern latitudes, when life all around slowly seems to shut down, spring does provide a wonderful rebirth of life.
Plants shoot up from the ground.
Trees blossom.
Birds fly and tweet.
Animals run around everywhere.

Before moving to this valley that has now been home for fourteen years, I had never witnessed such a cycle of life.  There is a rhythmic beauty in it, along with a profound message of the cosmos being far grander that we can possibly imagine.

It is also the time for nature's scavengers.

In the winter months, the red-tailed hawks sit there on telephone poles and tree branches, with a good view of the action down below.  They don't worry about the rain or the cold, it seems.  But, I rarely ever see them down the ground pecking away at their favorite carrion because, well, there is not a whole lot of life running around and dying.

Now that we are well into the spring, with the first day of summer only a few days away, the hawks are rarely ever on the telephone poles and tree branches.  They are down on terra firma, feasting away on the rotting flesh.

The turkey vultures gracefully glide in spirals that make me dizzy watching them.  They seem to dance to a waltz that I cannot hear.  While soaring above, they look so beautiful, but when they are on the ground and relatively close by, the birds with their small little faces makes me wonder if somebody mistakenly glued on a wrong head from a different toy!

A dead deer lay in the ditch along the road.

I don't ever imagine anybody calling up the public health authorities reporting a dead deer.  Nature's scavengers seem to be on the job 24x7.  I saw a hawk pecking away at the deer.  Fresh, organic, food for the raptor, which seemed to be in a rapture over the abundant food.  Yet, the birds do not get obese from these feasts.  When was the last time I ever saw a hawk or a turkey vulture so out of shape that it could not fly?

I suppose we humans are the only animals who live to eat, and to eat in excess, while the other animals eat to live and then spend the rest of their time sitting at telephone poles watching us crazy humans obsessed with doing things oblivious to all the transcendent beauty that is all around us.  The gracefully gliding turkey vulture witnesses us rushing about in mad pursuit of whatever it is that distracts us from whatever it is that our lives should be about.

If only we would pause and ponder about our lives and make it something above and beyond a simple scavenger hunt!

A gorgeous spring day it was here in paradise ...
sun, with puffy white clouds against a blue sky ...
about 69 degrees, a light breeze ...
A scavenger hunt it was not ;)


Ramesh said...

Once in a 100 years, just once, a "gorgeous" spring day comes to the blessed state of Oregon. Go out and roll on the grass, young man and forget about the scavengers :)

Sriram Khé said...

I can't roll on the grass--allergies ... hehehe ... ;)

mahesh said...

Good one Sriram Sir - good one!

Rat-race - scavenger-race - job-race - EMI-race --- vaazhkaila race irukkalam - vaazhkaiyae race aa maari poachu :)

Hopefully - sanity will prevail soon!


Sriram Khé said...

Yes, life is no race to be run, and there is no championship prize either. You maybe interested in this post from a while ago:

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