The Hooded Crow’s Couplets

Hooded crow (source: Billy Lindblom, CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons)

I see you there, hooded-ly,
as you walk down the cobbled slopes
crusted with ice, 
the Arctic Wind gushing at you;
for not seeing the crystal beauty of Loen
I do not blame you,
for now it is winter
and you dream only of this city. 
I refrain from crossly flying away.

I dream of seeing my fewer-feathered cousins
in the tropics…
you cannot.

For now, I say Krake!
and tell you more stories:

The Yellowhammer speaks through wisps 
of icy cold breath
to the businessman in Oslo
taking the elevator to his office 
just as he elevates his own altitude— 
you too, Gulsparv says, forget the Tundra
and the silence its stillness speaks,
how the quiet rings in your ears
and speaks to you
of the merging of black and white,
of the black forest and the white light.

But you have come too far,
or perhaps I have.

The House Sparrow sits in the nook,
watching you as you eat waffles at home.
Outside, black against white,
she says she sees a dog in his dog song
who waits for you, but you don’t see him.
Slowly, he makes to leave…
but cannot; 
neither can I, for I belong to this heath,
taking warmth from your fireplace.

A Nutcracker cracks a nut
outside your window
in excitement,
in applause
at my suggestions;
you peer quizzically through the window,
but do not see us.

The long-eared Owl
makes an unusual trip
to the children’s playground
where they play hungrily and happily
in their fields of sound,
waiting for you to come,
aware only of their field of sound
where he hears them call.

For here, too, there is quiet,
and the simultaneous quiet-noise
of the dog barking away in the distance,
in this seaside town,
as the fisher people bring in
their catch.

You can find the quiet in me,
in this conversation
between us,
for I mean you no harm.

The Water Rail sits on the country cow
in Loen; the milkmaid is happy—
they look out miles ahead
and see themselves
merging with the tropical Egret
sitting atop a buffalo
in a marshy paddy field,   
the farmer working his till
as they merge together
into the Tundra. 

Titiksha Pandit is a writer, strategist and researcher. Storytelling for her is a tool to explore the peripheries, shadows and in-betweens of experiences, places and people.