May 05, 2012

What lies beneath

Sharoo flies to a stop and perches on a window sill. 


"This is the story of an eagle" says a loud voice.


Sharoo turns his head and looks for the source. A bald man wearing glasses is speaking to a group of young boys and one girl. 


"Detention" says the sign on the door. A presentation is being beamed on one of the walls.


"The Eagle can live up to 70 years... " starts the man.


"But to reach this age, the eagle must make a hard decision. In its 40th year its long and flexible talons can no longer grab prey which serves as food. Its long and sharp beak becomes bent. Its old and heavy wings, due to their thick feathers, sticks to its chest and makes it difficult to fly"


Sharoo looks on in shock. No one had ever told him about this before! The little children are engrossed in the tale. 

"Then, the eagle is left with only two options: DIE or go through a painful process of CHANGE which lasts 150 days. The process requires that the eagle fly to a mountain top and sit on a rock. There the eagle knocks its beak against a rock until it plucks it out. Then the eagle will wait for a new beak to grow back and then it will pluck out its talons. When its new talons grow back, the eagle starts plucking its feathers. And after 5 months, the eagle takes its famous flight of rebirth and lives for 30 more years"

Sharoo blinks away tears. It sounds too painful. 

The man is not done yet. "Why is change needed? Many times, in order to survive we have to start a change process. We sometimes need to get rid of old memories, habits and other past traditions. Only freed from past burdens, can we take advantage of the present."

"Now, will you promise me that you will change?" says the man, looking quite gravely at the aberrant students. 

"Yes", they promise solemnly.

"Louder", urges the man.

"YES", comes the resounding reply. And they turn around as if in surprise at the squawk. Sharoo had chimed in. 

He was nearly 30 years old. He could feel the weariness creeping into his bones. The next morning, he went in search of the nearest mountain. 

Sitting on a cliff, he thought of the story again, his resolve unshaken. It was time. He started to hit his beak against a cliff. He could see eagle feathers in the distance, on the ground. Sharoo took a closer look. The bones and feathers seemed to spell out something. 

"IT IS A L" 

That doesn't make any sense, thought Sharoo.

Unperturbed, he went on gnashing his beak against the unmoving rock. It hurt worse than anything he could imagine - even more than the thought of the insides of his talons scraping against a bed of thorns. 

A few days later, he was hungry, his beak was half gone, and Sharoo was ready to die instead of living through hell. 

His beak lay around him in smithereens. 

He waited for what seemed like eternity, but didn't feel a new beak growing on him. 

The message below seemed to beckon to him, like an unsolved puzzle. That night, wondering if and when the beak would start to grow, it struck him.

By the time the sun came up, Sharoo knew what he had to do.

He stood on the edge of the cliff, looked below to a precise spot, and went over.

As he approached the carcasses around him, he felt a momentary sense of bliss, knowing he was doing the right thing. 

Splat! 

The puzzle below now began to spell out "IT IS A LI.."

2 comments:

Rush said...

Alrighty, the feedback I have gotten so far that this story is too obtuse..do let me know what you understand from it!! Please leave a comment with your interpretation..and I will modify the story based on your feedback.

myownrants said...

Agree with everyone!! Its obtuse!!