How time flies off…Days turned into weeks and months to a year and it was the Jackfruit season again. The last year fruits had gathered a lot of accolades. I had a request list ready for this year again. But I was wary this time…
There were two other trees too but I was an unkind stepmother to them. They were at the farthest end of the backyard on uneven hilly terrain. Besides, because of being on the higher end, torrential rains had decamped with substantial crust of the earth, making the thick roots
jet out on the surface. Balancing myself on them was a feat. I loved myself too much to risk having broken bones. Besides, they were huge trees who did not need care. Grownups, whether trees or human beings, don’t need all that love or affection like kids…Or do they??
Probably it only seems so… Many times tough exteriors hide a soft, vulnerable spirit yearning for love and care…When this is deprived, resentment, anger, hatred, depression and diseases follow….
Is it because of the rampant landscaping…around ? Landscaping of land, of children and their spirits too…everything to be done in a particular way so that it looks beautiful…….but when beauty does not uplift the spirit.. is it worthwhile?🤔🤔🤔🤔
An uplifted spirit which has found its roots sustains itself.
The roots sucked out whatever needed from the depths of the earth. They bore only a handful of fruits and those too remained beyond reach ….dangling menacingly from the top of the trees.
‘ Be kind enough not to fall on me or my children’s head.’ I seldom told them silently.
I hoped, this time their fruits would be accessible for distribution.
I spend sometime admiring my favourite tree everyday. Little bees flew in perhaps drinking the white sap.. the valleys spread as far as eyes could see. It was like a beautiful green gown adorned with white fluffy clouds and sparkling ribbons of streams… As I sat on my chair admiring the beauty around, doing absolutely nothing, the universe flowed through me…water, air, earth and the ether..
I took all of this in everyday but it never had occurred to me how deeply was I a part of them all. Housed in a body made out of things taken from the earth, daily sustaining it by its produce, and drinking off its springs, I still thought of myself as different, unique from the universe around….when all the time it was within me.😇🙂.
My trees flowered late as compared to others in the town. Probably they prepared themselves better… late April would they start flowering and fruits would be ready by June end lasting up to July..
I patiently watched them grow. I clicked photographs at regular intervals.
One such day as I stood near the tree, ‘ Take some more pictures of me.’
I almost heard it clearly.
‘But I have already taken many.’ I thought to myself.
I can take home at least a few fruits once they reach their potential. I will not take all, of course. I was thinking as I stood there.
‘This time my fruits are not for you.’ I heard loud and clear within me.
My imagination is running too much amok these days, I thought as I dismissed what I heard. It was as if the tree will decide who eats its fruits.
It was as if it will go about distributing it’s produce. I went back inside my house in disgust.
In a couple of weeks time, the fruits had grown almost to their full extent. I was thinking about starting the harvesting.
The next day, the driver Prem came running to the Out Patient Department of the hospital.
‘ Madam, all is lost. Your quarter gates have been broken into.’ He said with deep anguish.
Alarmed, I told the patients to wait and ran to my house.
The gate lock was lying on the stairs below. I ran to the front gate of the house. The lock was intact.
I turned to the driver.
“Only this front gate lock has been broken open! I thought the house..’
He interrupted me,
‘The Jackfruit tree!’ He said, pointing towards the backyard.
I ran towards it.
There it stood quietly, devoid of every single fruit….literally stripped of all it had….
“Such nice fruits Madam. How I wished I could take atleast five of them.”
Prem held his head low as he said this.
‘They must have brought a big vehicle. How else can they carry more than sixty of them, each weighing more than ten kgs each?” He said.
” It is all right.” I said.
I wanted to add, “Let’s respect the wishes of the tree.”
Of course I did not say that. I did not like the risk of losing my mind, in his eyes.
As I made my way back to the hospital, the truth of ‘ DANE DANE MEIN LIKHA HAI KHANE WALA KA NAAM’ ( Hindi) reverberated in my mind.
It meant that ‘ON EVERY MORSEL OF FOOD IS WRITTEN THE NAME OF THE ONE IT IS MEANT FOR.’
Who does this writing? 🤔🤔🤔Is it God or the tree itself?