The Great Indian Horned Owl turns poet and pens down thoughts on man’s greed.
I read with great interest letters from the spider, bee and the cow. Obviously, I do agree with what they say that man is a mean meddler. Interestingly, he destroys not just us but fellow human beings too. If you ask me, a wise owl, as to why he does this, I would say that it is because of his greed.
A page from India’s colourful past
A chapter on greed that makes one aghast.
It is the kaliyuga, says the cow
That doesn’t justify evils then and now.
British East India Company came to trade
And in India, flourished for many a decade.
Opium was a drug many Chinese were addicted to
But then Company officials had an addiction too.
Money and profits consumed them
The depth of their avarice hard to fathom.
The Company grew opium poppy on land
Made fertile and rich by Ganges alluvial sand.
Where previously grew sugar-cane, wheat, maize and rice
Now grew red poppy that fetched a phenomenally high price.
Unripe fruits of this plant, processed by these vile bandits
Were sold to eager Chinese addicts.
This made Chinese rulers exceedingly angry
And the Indian farmers poor and hungry.
In 1739, China’s emperor made the drug illegal
But smugglers still made it easily available.
One thing junkies will tell you for sure
With use, one will want more.
For over a century, the rogues plundered and exploited
Yet their lust for money remained unchanged.
In early 1800s they waged wars on the Oriental nation
To legalise this drug and thus encourage addiction.
Though China lifted the ban
Things didn’t go according to plan.
Corrupt officials lost their powers
When Chinese farmers grew their own poppy flowers.
Take it from me, a Great Indian Horned Owl
There are many ways to enrich, but most are foul.
Great Indian Horned Owl
Reply from Aristotle
Did you know that animals too get intoxicated by eating fermented fruits? Marula trees of southern Africa bear a pulpy, nutritious fruit that everyone in the animal kingdom loves. Elephants walk miles in search of the female tree that gives the fruit. When they feed on fallen, fermented fruits, they sway and stagger around!
If moose (or elk, if you like) in Sweden feed on apples fallen to the ground, they become highly aggressive. When fruit flies or honey bees feed on fermented fruit or plant sap, they get too dizzy to fly.