Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Gopal Lahiri writes

Sewri Mudflat

Before I adjust my dual eye lenses

The lesser flamingos start pecking at shrimps

Their red eyes and dark beak

jabbing in search of beta carotene.

More pink than white feathers, unlike the greater flamingos,

the inverted U-shaped necks survey

the rising sun and the tiny ripples

on the low tide water exchanging doubt and trust

amongst the distinct batches.

Some move towards mangroves to rest their legs

Some still feed the dawn

ignoring the curious looks of the

less-fancied sandpipers, plovers and stints.

Away from this narrow outlet,

the people on the main Sewri jetty

With small and big binoculars on,

Pull up tweets and ask where they are and

Whistle if they sight one or a few rump towards them.

Still choosing a pit stop every year

but in the shade

These migratory birds with their fatigued tail feathers

come digging clods of earth.

The view of the feathered guests turn out to be

Unique as always in the mud flat

under the mellow winter sun.

 Binoculars Painting - Bird Counters by Purvis Evans
 Bird Counters -- Purvis Evans


  1. Sewri (pronounced "Shivdi") is on the eastern edge of southern Mumbai. In 1996 its mangrove swamps were made a protected ecology because from October to March lesser flamingoes (Phoenicoparrus minor) go there from Rann in Gujarat to breed.

  2. Lovely poem. Excellent work. Enjoyed it immensely.


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