Saturday, July 22, 2006

Florita and the Bird*

This blog has been barren for quite some time. I’m either too busy or too lazy. Last week, something happened that made me want to write again.

The sky was dark, the downpour was relentless, and the wind was blowing hard. The city was under Florita’s rage. Waking up was a struggle, but I only had two options – stay in the warmth of my bed and suffer in the wrath of my boss, or brave the tempest and be, uhm, brave?

So I set off to work. My pants were drenched a few meters from the door of our apartment and my umbrella was a wreck (almost). To make matters worse, PUVs suddenly became extinct.

While I was waiting for a ride, a little bird fell from one of the trees lining the street. It plunged into the gutter. It moved its young wings with great effort, but it was in vain. I wanted to help the poor creature but all I was able to do was stand and stare, and I wonder why. It made me feel uncomfortable. When a Jeepney stopped, I immediately got on, leaving the bird still in the gutter. I could almost hear it cry for help.

The bird was running (or flying) in my mind the whole time during my trip to the office. Why haven’t I bothered to help it?

As I was traversing the few meters from the foot of MRT-Kamuning to the gate of the office, a sound caught my attention. There was an old man playing an equally old guitar and singing old songs to passers-by. Amidst the storm. Albeit the weather was a bit kinder in this part of the metro, I still couldn’t help but pity him. But then, I left him behind and hurried to work.

The image of the little bird flashed in my mind, followed by the old man’s. It was a montage sequence that recurred throughout the day. My stomach was heavy with guilt. Why haven’t I bothered?

Outside, the sky was weeping for me.
*The title maybe too children’s story-like, or too sleazy (*grin*) – as I.A. Richards puts it, “Meaning resides in people, not in words” (uuy, Comm 140!).