Pigeons on the Sill


The two pigeons sat on the window sill

opposite my semi-circular balcony.

Every evening they would retire to the dusty ledge,

to sleep,

sometimes facing each other, perhaps when in a pally mood,

and sometimes with their backs to each other,

frozen in that comical pose till morning.

I always tried to figure out where they went,

during their morning forays.

But got no clue.

Pigeons were intrusive creatures, laying down their shit everywhere,

but were immensely private at the same time too,

what with the dead pan looks of obliviousness and ignorance.

The maid would first shoo them away with an impatient wave of her hands,

the second day she would swing the broom at their snobby beaks,

the third day it might be water or a hardened lemon thrown their way,

if the shit was hitting the ceiling, highly toxic as it was.

But if the much hurt pigeon might shy away for a couple of days,

the fresh-on-robust-energy-and-bravado friend or mate,

would make up for the absence.

Then my grandmother told me one day,

after silently observing the maniacal maid for a while,

“do you know, pigeons come to happy homes?”

For a while, after that I felt, as if I had been hit by a hardened lemon or thrown water on myself,

because I too had heartily supported by maid’s frantic endeavours,

what with the sounds of mating getting louder and unbearable with each passing day,

under the hot air-conditioner,

just when I was trying hard to concentrate for my exams.

I often gravely pondered upon what she said,

every time I saw a pigeon bulldozing his way on a distant parapet.

I took to silently observing these feisty birds on the window sill opposite.

At night, they seemed almost serene after their day’s exploits.

Just like errant schoolchildren,

who had tired themselves of throwing mud at others, pulling ponytails or simply falling off swings.

In my daily detached observations, unknowingly,

I developed an attachment towards the grey-two who adorned and made the cozy sill their own.

I finally believed my grandmother,

during one twilight,

when my father passed away,

and the pigeons never came back to sit on the window sill.

Every evening, I would step out,

with the hope of seeing those two.

But they never did come back.

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