Oh, Mother! (continuation of the article MOTHER OF ALL ART)
By Swit La Pound
Picking up from where we left, mother nature does not cease to impress me with her master pieces. The last time we looked closer at a spider, its planning and execution, and its goal attainment, it is impossible to deny that nature leads our art and being. Our very existence.
Today, again, as with every other morning, I woke up and went to sit outside in the garden, waiting for the sun to show face and for nature to awake. It is always most beautiful in the mornings. There is not much humming and buzzing of vehicles and people. Nature is distinctly audible and visible, without human interruption. In my garden, there is a huge tree, I have no clue what the tree is called, but it is always green, all year round. Different species of birds perch here. Some for the sun, visibly, some seem to fight over nests, with the one bird that lives here, and some seen to be getting food from the tree. All of them fascinate me and capture my sight easily. Green with yellow beaks, blue with black feet, yellow and black-bodied ones. Variety.
Besides seeing and admiring my ears too, always give a keen and curious listen. These birds that come to this tree, put up a show without knowing it, the best in the world, I must say. From their unique and differing colors and designs, which look like flying painted art pieces, their sizes, their beautiful calls, and their well-knitted tiny nests, they present nothing but perfection, as they hop and swing from branch to branch. The chirping and flapping are consistent, though divergent depending on the type of bird, and the surroundings as well.
To me, at first, it seemed like happy chirping and flapping all the time, until I took time to listen with an unbiased ear and see with unblinded eyes. Turns out, each bird has varying sounds that come out on different incidents, under different circumstances. Most times, the birds seem to understand each other, despite their differing types and sounds. They seem to communicate effectively and consistently.
This observation awoke the curiosity in me, and so I observed the bird that lives in the tree. It has a yellow body and a black tummy. This bird is ever busy and occupied. If it’s not sourcing building materials, bringing them back, and renovating or rebuilding nests, it wards off intruders, who fought back and always came for another try. At times, it flew off for some time, only to return to its home always. I noticed how it had a slow, steady, and timed chirp. As it worked alone, or around birds, it saw no danger in. The first days, it used to look at me down below, with suspicion, until I noticed, with the days, that it got comfortable and did not nervously fly off every time I moved as before. Daily, I watch this bird, observing and learning, in hopes of deciphering nature’s secrets to such functionality.
As afire said, when this bird is just sitting in the sun, it has a melodic chirp that comes every one minute or so. But then, when it sees danger or a threat, the chirping turns frantic, combined with frantically wagging tail feathers, chirpingping frantically, shaking its tail feathers, while hopping from one branch to the other, a message which all other birds seemed to get clearly. They seem to join in on this warning dance, as if to spread the news further and warn others, before they take off, to return when safety is restored.
They watch out for each other despite being of different kinds! We think birds just coo and chirp without reason or direction, fooled we are. The precision, unity, and oneness that I see in my observation suggest contra.
As if to agree with my perception, a flock of pigeons passes by every morning, flying in formation, circling an area many times together, until they fly away. It overwhelmed my daughter and me the first two times we noticed this flying pattern and still get amazed every other time till now. It is just a beautiful sight. As if driven by the same wings, in unison, they fly, usually in a V-shape, each other the other, gracefully gliding and turning on cue. Trained? No, these are natural pigeons. It’s as beautiful as watching an airplane flying display by those synchronized pilots, usually at army parades. Why? How? I do not know! Maybe birds too, play follow your leader.
Why did these birds remind me of humans so much? What did I see? Our fails, in their perfection-yet we are a completely different species? Maybe because our lifestyle, entertainment, and practices seem to use nature as a blueprint. The link between the two distinct and undeniable to me. Who teaches nature to be beautiful, to be amazing, to be unique, and be a master at hordes of skills? How come we struggle to attain this thing that seems naturally easy for birds?
Singing is a bird thing, as most know, but the perfection of it.. can not be human! Have you ever taken a moment, closed your eyes, and just listened to nature. The sounds and melodies, raw and yet perfected, giving us, for free, that which we pay in our world, and go to yoga for peace and tranquility. The colors, the perfect gliding, and the alertness, just magnificent. It seems birds make the most of what they are naturally gifted with. Each in its rightful place, playing its role.
Pitched against us humans, we can query our intelligence. For starters, the sound…..though we have guitars, trumpets, drums, and hordes of instruments that aid us, our music stands no ground against nature’s masterpieces. We are not harmonized and synchronized, not only musically, but as individuals, in thought and mind. Despite the missing oneness, our need to better everything, instead, proves us wanting, unless we practice for days, and even then, our harmonies are not perfect or nearly as good. The music we know and have made if you listen carefully, imitates sounds of nature, with intent to better them, an impossibility. We can only copy and imitate, but will never succeed in outdoing or “bettering “nature. There’s a reason when one seeks soothing, they turn to nature and its sounds–the songs of the birds, the whisper of the trees, the crushing of waters, and the flapping of wings. They speak to the soul without saying a word.
Nature exhibits its genius daily, musical or otherwise, but we fail to observe, because of the noise we make, with our loud, undecipherable songs and lifestyles we call trends. We overshadow nature with our developments, only to yearn for its presence when it’s gone or dented. We only realize our need for nature untouched when it’s too late. Nature’s touch is unique and cannot be aided by human hands.
The gliding and dancing of the birds reminded me of our own moves. Tell me we did not imitate nature…yet we have planes that fly the skies, we have synchronized dancing that follows birds’ flying patterns. Even our daily routines and the colors we love echo nature’s steps undeniably.
Yet in all we stole, we forgot the important elements that elevate nature to success at perfection since time immemorial. . We forgot to copy the diversity and coexistence these birds seem to have mastered easily. We fight and argue to attain supremacy, instead of helping each other and pulling our kind out of the mud together. We fail to look out for each other, especially where we are different, and we let others fall into danger, knowing well that they are walking into lions' Jaws. These birds sound warnings for all of their kind nearby, not only for those of the same type as them. As soon as anyone spots possible, Imminent danger, the alarm is sounded for all, not for specific birds. With us, when danger comes, it’s each man for himself, and it is easy for one to feed the other to the wolves, just to save his own skin.
We cannot see that nature functions because of unity and co-dependency. I found its beauty in the blend and mixture in the different sounds, colors, and types of birds and animals, each contributing his share, creating one masterful sounding natural backtrack.
We fail to integrate with nature and complement its attributes, as much as we cannot integrate with each other, to build a strong front. Our ways seem to depreciate our values, our products, our whole being… Nature, on the other hand, remains unchanged, except to the extent of our interruption, and continues to present finery and perfection, daily, with every rising sun.
Each animal, beetle, and bird knowing their place, their cue, and their responsibilities, without hastening or consistent urging, as we humans do. Even with rehearsals, technology, and fancy instruments, we will never attain the level of harmony and peace that nature provides, as long as we lack in the important elements… Unity, working together, selflessness, and above all… Standing in the place of your calling, to play your part in building the community. You find someone with a passion for singing, working as a teller in a shop. Hence their attitude and behavior are without passion, but merely for necessity… We have musicians and artists who have made it to the top of the world, though their talent and ethics are questionable because they know someone powerful, they sit on that pedestal, throwing off the natural balance. Our art, our being, our nature, is not synchronized for we are selfish, vengeful, competitive, and always looking out for number 1. As many as we are, we pick out differences and discriminate, and misplace our own development and growth as a people. Talent is quantified into currency, and those with a high propensity of getting fame, despite the possibility of lack in what they offer, make it to the top, while those without a big name to call on and to aid them, remain at the bottom of the stairs, struggling, despite being overly talented.
If only we saw the full picture; if we did not envy only the colors, movements, and sounds of birds and nature and if we aimed to follow in nature’s footsteps genuinely, we would have emulated the spirit that drives nature, the oneness, the consideration, the dependency and the acceptance of one’s character, and being. We probably would have been a better and united society. But our ways reap from the perfection of nature, in greed and hunger to control, leading us to a slow but gradual demise. Nature is mother to all, and ours was an obligation to abide by her rules, but we, being the humans we are, threw it all out the window, choosing to be our own masters and creators, the drivers of our own fate. A route which is proving unworthy, with its adverse effects, not only on ourselves and our lives but also, on nature itself, stripping and plundering, from the perfect picture painted since creation. Oh my brethren, change our ways we need to, for doom certainly cometh our way if we remain on this path we chose to take!