Friday, November 4, 2016

Of foxes and jackals

Foxes know many things
I am sure that they know this too.
Cutting the corners of cunningness
they are the custodians of worldly ways.
Jackals too belong in this august company.
This is a reaction to those two particular
jackals spinning off tales in the Panchatantra.
They've wandered again into my psyche long after
that childish curiosity about talking animals.
This time too they were deep in conversation
about not just what is good but what is possible.
They sneak in everywhere I look or overlook.
Two people talking, I can only imagine their bushy tales.
Mysterious Once-upon-a-times created even out of boredom.
Their conversation ricochets across centuries
taking me along with other animals
in the forest called human nature.

(Karataka & Damanaka from Panchatantra; "The Fox and the Hedgehog", Isaiah Berlin)