Learning from a dove – The Hindu


Come forth into the light of things, Let Nature be your teacher.”

These beautiful lines by William Wordsworth are true to the letter. The other day, a white gray-spotted dove was building a nest. I could get a clear view of it from my kitchen window, though unreachable from there. Whenever I had to work in the kitchen, I would have a casual glance at the nest. It was amazing to see the bird patiently sitting to hatch the eggs for almost two weeks. One morning, the eggs hatched, and the mother protected the chicks for over three weeks.

As days passed, I got curious to see the young ones fly. Whenever I came into the kitchen, my eyes rested on the nest. But one evening, a sad sight awaited me. The nest lay empty, and the mother dove was standing beside it. I am sure the chicks could not have taken off on their own, as they were too young to fly. Whether they fell prey to a rodent or just fell off from the nest was a great mystery. That was a tragic end to the tale of the young birds after so much hard work put in by the mother.

A few months passed, and I again caught sight of the dove building a new nest near the old one. The patience shown again in laying and hatching eggs and tending to its young ones was unbelievable. The nest was unreachable from my kitchen window, so I was unable to protect it when heavy rain lashed. A few days after the rain, I looked through the window, only to be greeted by the sight of one of the chicks lying dead. I could not bear to behold the sight. The dove, on the other hand, was more determined to tend to the living one until it became old and strong enough to be ready to take its first flight.

The undaunted patience the dove showed in taking care of its chicks was astounding. I realized I had learned a lovely lesson from the bird. There might be many heart-breaking episodes in our lives, but patience must be the key to unlocking the doors of hope and happiness. The saying “Every cloud has a silver lining” can indeed be applicable to each of us!

The bird can be regarded as a perfect tutor when it comes to showing patience. Like this, innumerable lessons can be sought in nature if one is willing to learn.

priyasri_m_1976@yahoo.com



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