For your reading

Mist and Moonlight

IN RESIDENCE | BY HEERA

January 1st, 2021

 

Having had enough of the ruckus created below, Moonlight took a moment from his pondering: “Hey Mist, I am in deep thought; some quiet will be welcome for me to reach a decision.”

 

“Shhhhh.”

 

“Stop with your sushing. And what’s that you’re dragging?”

 

“Can’t tell.”

 

“Why not?”

 

“Becuz.”

 

“Becuz is an answer?”

 

“It’s special,” whispered Mist.

 

“Why are you shouting?”

 

Mist got the sarcasm. Craning his neck, “Moonlight, it’s an important project. I don’t want anyone to get a whiff of my plan.”

 

 

“Plan?”

 

“Yup.”

 

“What’s the hoopla about? And what happened to us being best friends?”

 

“Oh, you are my best furry friend. But…well, okay, I am going to let you into my secret. Promise you won’t tell a soul.”

 

“Promise on my bushy tail.”

 

“Thank you, Moonlight.” After another quick survey around him, “You know how I always forget where I bury my nuts?”

 

“Tell me about it.”

 

“Well, I came up with an idea to safeguard my spots by marking them with big wood chips.”

 

“That’s impressive,” encouraged Moonlight.

 

“Thanks.” Acknowledging his friend’s request, “I am sorry to have disrupted your thinking. You look troubled. What’s the matter?”

 

 

“Human beings.”

 

“What about them?”

 

“Human beings create unjust imbalance.”

 

“Huh?”

 

“Perched high, I see it all.”

 

“All?”

 

“The nuts we squirrels enthusiastically hide often grow into thousands of glorious trees, and the tree roots diligently do their part—they work hard to stabilise the earth’s foundation.”

 

Throwing his arms up in the air, Mist exclaimed, “And how W-O-W is it!”

 

“Wow, it is. But when greedy humans painstakingly squirrel everything illicit, in devious burrows, they weaken and dismantle humanity’s foundation.”

 

Mist’s eyes quickly welled up, “Human destruction pains my tiny-soft heart.”

 

“Your pain and nature’s suffering are the reason’s why I have been thinking of sending a notice to our squirrel squad: “STOP WORKING EARNESTLY AT HIDING NUTS.”

 

“Oh no, don’t. Think about the dreams that will extinguish, the joys that will vanish.”

 

“What are you saying?”

 

Mist was concerned about his friends. “What will happen to Petal and Snowflake.”

 

“What about them?”

 

 

“Snowflake works non-stop inspecting the health of trees, enjoying the rustling sound of leaves. And darling Petal, she tirelessly whispers encouragement to saplings and lovingly hugs trees, taking pride in her attitude of gratitude.”

 

Mist continued, “Moonlight, nature is our special playground; it is here that we play, learn and evolve. We must continue doing what we do best, with the hope that the younger generation of humans first recognises and then take the help of their conscience to do right by themselves.”

 

“Do right by themselves?”

 

Mist explained patiently, “Caring starts from within—I, like each one of our blessed squirrel squad, am first a caring friend to myself, thus a caring friend to nature.“

 

“This stuff is deep!”

 

“I have no desire to lower my standards to match that of human beings whose eco-systems are toxic.”

 

“You are right, my mindful Mist; we are the restores of nature.”

 

“We are squirrels—free and joyous; it’s no surprise even great towering oaks, our teachers, trust us with continuing their legacy—by planting acorns.”

 

“I never thought about nature this way. Trees trust in us, squirrels, is a privilege.”

 

“It is indeed. Basking in the sun, becoming dissuaded by the human state of affairs won’t do you, or us, any good; wellness is in action. So Moonlight, if you want your legacy to continue being rich like nature, bring your fluffy self down and help me hide these nuts, glorious and precious.”

 

“Pronto!”

 

“Now that’s the spirit. I can’t wait to share our exchange with my friend in India; he will be proud to learn about our continued investment.”

 

Settling across Mist with his gleaming saucer-eyes, “You have a friend in India?”

 

“Yup.”

 

“But India is far from America; how can you…?”

 

“Technology.”

 

Moonlight was impressed with his best friend’s perspective. Curious to learn more, “Mist, now tell me all about your friend in India.”

 

Eager to share the high-thinking and unrelenting efforts of his friend, an exceptional human being, Mist made himself comfortable and started his narration: “My friend’s name is Jadav Payeng….”

 

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