At dusk he was born, a yellow hatchling under a red sky. He was loud and chirpy, demanding attention from the beginning.
His eyes opened and wings were spread even before his companions, the remaining of my future children, awoke from gestation.
I read his mind from the start, it had freedom engrained in every cell. My little child, he wanted to fly before we even taught him how to walk.
He had a grey beak, a sonorous gift of spring. He used his voice to call for me, it echoed, impactful under and over the canopies of all trees.
Sunset after sunset I looked at the red sky as his wings grew and bosom blossomed. His voice only became more persistent.
He told his siblings about the freedom of flying and all.
They boy wanted to learn how to fly. He wanted the strength to pick up twigs and build his own nest. He was too young for that. Wasn’t he?
Evenings passed and my motherly instinct grew stronger, the boon of motherhood gained so much power.
I silenced him when he spoke of the sky, the clouds and the vanquishing sun.
In a month, boys like him were taking their first lessons of flying. I let him watch from under my wing.
“I bring him grain and clean the chaff. Nourishment is brought to him from the farms afar.” I explained myself.
I wished to let go eventually but will eventually could mean till the end of eternity,
“The sky is unsafe, there could be mischievous vultures and motor planes. It’s unreasonable for a boy like him to fly.” I substantiated.
Weeks passed and we were still the same, the possessiveness faded and my love which stemmed from the guilt of holding him captive grew so much stronger.
I suddenly wanted my son to spread his wings and soar above green fields. I had so many new emotions and no words to confess them. So on the first morning of a cool Autumn, I brought him to the edge and watched in fear as he fell along gravity. I hoped and prayed, all in the moment he gained control. As I watched, he looked above. A shocked and glorious expression in his eyes. His hopefulness and yearning for the freedom to fly inspired me. He made me the mother I became. He made me realise the true potential of my children.
So when I see his marvelous wings soaring off the green fields that they had always dreamed of, my heart fills with joy and my eyes begin to wet. The sight of my son, a bird claiming his sky in my heart forever lingers.
Author: Vedant Vaswani
Editor: Rhythm Pujara