Vid stranden by Dorina Mocan
(Inspired by a painting of Dorina Mocan)
by Sain Sucha
"Wake up… wake up!"
He turned his head
And there it sat,
Outside his window,
The black myna bird
"Why are you whispering,
And why are you so hoarse ?"
The old farmer.
"Stupid was I
Who flew over the city
Instead of flying around it;
And now I cannot sing!"
"What do you want?"
The old man heard the anxiety
In the bird's voice
And enquired about it.
The myna replied:
"I have come the long way
Because you are a true son of the Earth;
I believe you would understand me!"
"Just tell me,
What's in your heart?"
"Our Mother Earth feels sick!
Her children torment her
With gruesome games;
Her skin is torn asunder by tanks,
Dynamite inflicts burning sours on her body,
Toxic chemicals run through her veins,
And lethal gases fill her lungs --
She suffers from shivers, cough and fever.
Do you remember how last Christmas
She suffered from severe stomach-ache,
Her whole inner being shook with convulsions,
And she threw up a violent wave of her fluids --
A tsunamis that drowned all far and near?
And do you recall how a few weeks later on
She got palpitation and breathed so heavily
Exhaling a wind storm that violently
Fell haughty pines and majestic firs?
And haven't you heard either
About her rising fever
That is causing flood in the oceans
When the snow melts from her breasts?
The bird paused, and then added:
"Earth, our mother, needs us now!
We must hurry to help her.
We must stand by Mother Earth!"
"What can I do?
An old man am I
Far away from all,
Neither strong nor rich,
Without influence or authority.
I own a little land,
A flock of sheep, and my ram Sathi,
Imdad, my dear wife
And my daughter Arodnap;
Haven't you flown into the wrong direction?"
"No, it is you that I seek!
It is you who have the daring ram
And the golden girl.
One fears no hurdle
And the other knows no evil,
Together they make an invincible pair –
And it is for their sake I have come here!"
The old man shook his head:
"It's true that my ram is strong and brave,
And my daughter is chaste,
But what service could they perform
That Mother Earth would heal?"
"Unseen should they enter
The well-guarded citadel of gods,
On the other side of the rainbow,
And open the Pandora's Box."
"Open the Pandora's Box!"
Horrified, yelled the old man.
"Doesn't it suffice with all the misery that already abounds,
Must you release more evil?"
"No, all the miseries are already running loose,
Only Hope had stayed behind,
But it did not stay there of her own accord –
It was confined there by hideous forces.
And we have lived for ages
In darkness, without hope.
And now Hope must be set free
If we are to regain a trustworthy belief."
But the farmer cried again:
"A belief? And what purpose a belief would serve?
It is just the beliefs held by various people
That spread suffering and sorrow in the world!
In the name of religion ravage
One race members of another."
"Not that kind of belief, Dear Sir "
Said the bird,
"No, not that kind!
That kind of belief is borne by the people
Who are either blinded by their arrogant pride
Or suffer from grave destitution.
That kind of belief is devoid of knowledge,
And it merely leads to dark thoughts
And results in the execution of innocent people
By narrow minded tyrants;
Or, certain individual without any hope,
After being misled by others
Who use false divine references for their own purpose,
Are led to kill harmless people
By self-annihilation combined with murder. "
"No, the belief that arises with Hope,
And in due time matures into knowledge,
Supported by facts and reason;
That belief shows us the path to enlightenment.
That's why we must liberate Hope!
With hope in every heart,
Sound beliefs in our mind
And knowledge as our goal
We would tame the wicked forces.
First, when no one mobs another
Because one is a man, woman, bird or fish;
White, pale, brown or black;
Jew, Christian, Muslim or Hindu;
Asian, African, European or American;
But accept all as our fellow-beings,
Then could we endeavour to retrieve
Mother Earth's lost honour and grace.
And together could we
Reclaim Her devastated gardens,
Cleanse her poisoned soil,
Get rid of the toxic gases;
Only then, when She feels restored,
Our Mother Earth perhaps anew
Open her arms and give us the sanctuary
And the love that we have lost
Because of our misdeeds!"
The old farmer objected:
"But the citadel of the gods
Lies beyond the rainbow!
How could Sathi and Arodnap
Reach those grounds?"
"Yes! I would be their guide,
And with my song I would plead their case;
With Sathi's bold climb
And Arodnap's innocence
Every place is within their reach.
When the gods hear about
The suffering of Mother Earth
Surely they would set Hope free!
The old farmer closed his eyes,
Inhaled deep and said:
"Go ahead and take my beloved daughter,
And take my wondrous ram,
Because I hear the truth in your voice!
May you reach the citadel you just named,
And Hope be your travelling companion
On your way home! Go now
Before it gets too late!"
Thereupon slept the old farmer
A deep and tranquil sleep;
Not the sleep of a man
Who had sent away his daughter and his ram;
No, but the sleep of a Mother Earth's child
Who had served his mother well!
He was awoken from his deep sleep
When he heard his wife call:
"Wake up… wake up!"
"Why are you yelling,
And why are you so hoarse?"
Asked the old man.
He heard his wife speak anxiously:
"Barn's gates are wide open
And Sathi is not there,
Arodnap's window is also open
But she lies not in her bed!"
The old man smiled and said in a steady tone:
"Fear not, my dear Imdad,
I know where they have gone,
And before the night falls
They would come home with Hope."
Even if his wife did not grasp anything
Of what he said, she heard the belief in his voice
And saw the lustre in his eyes.
She smiled too and looked out
Of the window -- filled with hope!