Caravan of healers from a distant nation,

Surveying the terrain with keen concentration


Shimmering shapes move in the morning mist-

Is it a rhino, an elephant, or… some mythical beast?

Parade of pachyderms slowly emerge into view,

Stomping and swinging their trunks, as if on cue.

Baby rhino munches happily on tall elephant grass

Cautious mama unicornis lets the humans pass.

Wild water buffalo swims lazily across the “jheel”,

Retinue of white egrets above, pecking with their bills.

Iridescent blue morpho darts and flits ahead,

Nature’s chandeliers– the orchids, sway overhead.

The swamp deer barks its stern warning call

Hushh….shall we see the royal tiger after all..?

The wild boar snorts, and breaks into a run,

A somnolent gharial basks in the warming sun.

A kingfisher swoops into the clear blue water,

Still stands the ibis and the “snake-bird” darter.

A golden langur swings from the “bael” tree,

Pair of hawk eagle soars ever proud and free.

Rose ringed green parakeets color the blue firmament,

Musical “koyals” create a land of enchantment.

Ignorance, prejudice, disease and death-

May you repel a poacher’s every vile threat.

Flourish and thrive for a future generation,

A veritable paradise – a jewel of our nation!


Udita Mukhuty Jahagirdar

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