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The Lion Sleeps

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January 15th 2017  |  0  |  Category: Adventure , Fiction , Moral , Philosophical , Romantic Love , Tragedy  |  Author: Titu  |  550 views

As lion was getting older, he found himself most of the time sleeping as hunting was becoming tough for him. His own pride had left him many years ago and his dark mane was waning. He was now afraid of hunting big animals and smaller animals were quick for his grab. His roar was not loud and forceful and was filled with heavy breath. Most of his sleeps were filled with nightmares and night terrors. During dreams he yelled, screamed and kicked, but he had nobody to support and care for him. He usually felt anxious, fearful and panicky after such dreams. In sleeps, he repeatedly saw that giant wolf possessing sharp claws and massive teeth was tormenting him. In dreams, the wolf often ordered public slaughter of lion in different ways. Recurrent dream also started hallucinating lion in believing that this giant wolf was perhaps justice planned by Goddess of jungle against him, as perhaps wandering soul of revengeful wolf had won her trust.

After sleep he was filled with horror and deep sadness. He always told fox what he saw in his dreams, “The giant wolf was far bigger, powerful and agile. He was fearsome. He was more clever and intelligent than any creature on earth and the demon wolf was in great command as animals followed him more faithfully. I could never believe that animals can sit with demon wolf and discuss their problems. I still remember words repeatedly being discussed during the meetings: Democracy and Participation.” The fox remained silent as he had no answers.
Lion started firmly believing that Goddess of jungle was giving him forewarning that in future the jungle will have DEMONCRACY, not denocracy. So, this DEMON wolf will rule the jungle, so forest will not be ruled from lion’s den.
Lion called wise rabbit who was astrologer and dream interpreter. The rabbit was timid, but had a wide and deep vision and also powerful intuition. Known for his foresight and mystic power, the rabbit calmed the lion and interpreted lion’s recurrent dreams and symbols with great caution. Rabbit knew what the dream meant in totality, but mentally decided to reveal partial truth to lion. Rabbit said, “Oh! Lion king, Your dream is exaggeration of your real life fear and worries. Also, the Goddess of forest wants a ruler who is chosen by animals themselves. The ruler so appointed will be most powerful ruler on earth as he will enjoy absolute faith of animals and animals will readily sacrifice themselves for his honour. He will command with iron hand and nobody will dare to disobey or disregard him. It was how humans manage their world. Once this is done, your dream will stop disturbing you and you will become young again. If you don’t address woes of animals, the demon of your dream can even harm you more badly and you will get more old” The rabbit also shared his experience with lion, he told how well rabbit was leading his pack with persuasion rather than power and even humans manage their pack in the same way and they call it democracy.
Lion was happy and impressed by the word democracy that he had so frequently heard in his dreams. He thought that if any demon comes in future, it will be better if all animals are ready to fight him in unity, so he called Fox and told that all animals should be informed that forest will be true democracy and will also have freedom of voice. Now, animals will choose their new king and also, animal voices and opinions will be published in weekly newspaper.
The fox was excited at his master’s happiness and happily spread the news among the animals that elections will be held very soon and new king will be appointed as per the wishes of animals. Also jungle newspaper will get published and this will keep a watch on this new ruler.
Election date was announced and nominations filed. Poor donkey was pitied against lion as opposition candidate. Ballots were put and power hungry lion bungled the elections and again become king of jungle, now, of course in a democratic way. The responsibility of running newspaper was given to three wise and close associates of lion: Rabbit, Monkey and zebra. Zebra was doubtful of lion’s intention and afraid of responsibility and resigned prematurely, so jackal was appointed as his replacement, despite lion was unhappy about it but animals made lion to accept it as proposal had wide approval from powerful animals like bulls, bisons, crocodiles, elephants and bears. Lion thought, “This bastard will also meet the fate of wolf very soon and I must wait till I get strong again.” The next day fox read out the king’s order:
“As Rabbits were greatest in number in jungle, who lived in meadows, woods, forest, deserts and wet lands. As they were always predated, so were skilled in detecting danger by their large ears and wide vision. Also as one of them, the great astrologer rabbit, who was also loyal to seat, so it is appointed as the chief of newspaper.
As Monkey, unlike baboons, are arboreal animals and are intelligent. Even humans have heavily depended on monkeys for their space exploration and in medicine research, so lion king thought that he could capture events in jungles and human settlements without frills and with wider perspective and so he is appointed as photographer.
At last, as Jackal being nocturnal could work 24 hrs without halt and was known in jungle folklore and legends as clever sorcerer. As jackal could work alone and was having sound experience of area that was desolated and abandoned, so he could act as tough professional reporter. As Jackal could easily inhabit the crevices of rock and dens of beasts and easily mingle with animals, so was considered efficient in keeping a watchful eye on demons, beasts and humans and so is appointed as reporter.”
The first story in Jungle Newspaper ‘The Future of Jungle: habitat loss and conflict with man’ became hit among animals. It was about how humans has planned to construct a big wall surrounding the jungle, in which all animals will be put in captivity and humans will come frequently to jungle to poke fun at animals. The rabbit asked all animals in opinion page to unite against this threat of human dominance and control and forget their caste, creed and clan. Animals also felt the threat and debated issue of their habitat and water resource being captured and destroyed, and possibility of humans ultimately ruling the jungle. The lion was happy with this story as it angered animals against humans and strengthened him against the demon that repeatedly threatened him in dreams.
The trio of Rabbit-Jackal-Monkey was honored by lion king by presenting a golden plaque of ‘The Mizaru’. Now they were widely respected in jungle and all animals treated them royally. But a certain section of wild animals were not happy with King and press. They were particularly critical about the newspaper and its’ praises regarding how it projected lion as true soldier guarding borders alone by patrolling the jungles courageously. They called ‘The Trio’ the bastards of lion, who see, hear and speak no evil against the king. They were constantly warning trio to report facts fairly and truly. The ruler king was, however, very delighted with his trio press puppet reporting.


Lion was also aware that press can also go against it, if lion gets week. So it constantly checked with fox what the trio was up to. He always feared a possibility of press becoming more powerful and he wanted holy trio must always report with his secret approvals and within its limits.
The rabbit knew the dangers of lollipop reporting. He knew the dangers of fearful and biased reporting as it could lead to poor press and decisions. The rabbit was no more a prey and was powerful in his new found status. He felt that he was far more powerful than ruler as he can create tides against him. Also, the monkey and the jackal felt power and became more hungry for news that were sensational as it gave them wide coverage, appreciation and awards.
One day jackal ventured into human territory to get fresh news about human settlements. He saw a wolf like creature sitting comfortably among humans and remembered that he was same wolf that was ordered to be killed by lion king some years ago. First he thought he was mistaken, but then he could not wait for any more exciting than this. It was time to undo the old adage, “One day life of lion is better than hundred years of jackal.” Still jackal had his doubts as he knew that fearful rabbit will not publish anything against lion, so it was better to remain silent and wait for opportunity.
Till date monkey had carried many photo shoots of butter flies and insects, flora and fauna, plants and bushes, woods and forest, etc, still monkey wanted that ‘aha’ photo to happen. Monkey had produced many good level and overhead shots through his exceptional virtue of climbing, jumping and running. calm and patience.
On one fine afternoon, monkey was busy shooting butterflies by angling, positioning, zooming and stilling his camera. He was chasing a rare species of butterflies, which was making photography excessively difficult. Unmindful of time and space, the monkey went on chasing butterfly for that perfect rare shot with calm and patience. Still the shot was not happening and monkey was determined to have a perfect shot. Unmindful of consequences the monkey ventured far and finally entered into human territory for that rare shot, when suddenly the butterfly settled in distance garden. The monkey’s patience was shattered as he had to rush back to deliver snaps in time to press room, the monkey clicked photographs of butterfly at rapid pace without seeing much in detail.
Finally monkey rushed to pressroom after such a bad and hectic day. When he reached pressroom, the monkey saw jackal and rabbit were in deep conversation about a story. The jackal was hiding something and looked disgruntled. The monkey started editing photos, when suddenly he jumped in wonder with a photo in his hand and said, “Wow! I have done it.” The restless jackal and rabbit came to monkey’s table to see what monkey was so excited about. On seeing the photograph, the trio shouted, “THE WOLF”
On subsequent cover-up expedition with monkey for fact checking, Jackal collected more information and recertified previous facts for his reporting and monkey also clicked secretly photographs of wolf at different places. Finally, the grand story with aha photographs was ready for pring.
Then on following Sunday, a frontline story titled ‘King lion Slept, While Wolf Escaped’ appeared. It contained background and details of how king lion had befooled animals by planning escape of wolf to human settlement and now, same wolf along with humans was planning mass capturing and slaughter of all animals. The news spread like wild fire in jungle and animals were shocked and angered at this expose. The tired Jackal said to monkey and rabbit, “A tongue three inches long can kill a lion six feet tall. In next issue, we must bring more stories against lion and let’s throw this unworthy beast out. He over sleeps and over eats. Throughout his life, lioness and his younger one’s have feeded him, now he is burden on us. Tailors and writers must mind the fashion” The trio was happy that ultimately truth was published, but rabbit was worried and thought, “In jungle, free press means tame press. In Jungle, press was for making ignorant and crazy animals, more ignorant and crazy. Beastly lion still feared bad press, rather than bayonet. Lion wanted press to report arson and fire in places where there was none. Animals were happier, perhaps before PRESS”
Lion was sleeping as usual and thought how well the press was working, but still had doubts about their loyalty. He was happy that it is always good to read newspaper along with first meal of day on Sunday. The moment lion opened newspaper, he was amused to see the news and it took no time for him to guess the poor animal’s reaction. He was relaxed and unmoved as he knew commoners always first overreact and then forget. He imagined at evening ‘The Trio’ will constitute his delicacy at dinner table and then, he decided to sleep happily.
The lion was happy about this new experiment as now he knew what the dream meant and was confident that there is only one natural rule and that is RULE OF JUNGLE : ONLY POWERFUL CAN RULE AND SURVIVE and nobody was more powerful than Lion. In sleep the lion murmured, “No democracy or demoncracy, hm, hm, ONLY Denocracy in jungle. Warrior rules, not worrier and those three bastards wanted to rule the jungle along with that absconding wolf.” Now, it felt more The Royal King of Jungle or The Stately King of Beasts. Also, the Eagle was happy to hear the song and trumpet of cunning and opportunist fox. Whole of the jungle was happily echoing with song of fox:
“Ee-e-e-oh-mum-a-weh
Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh……In the jungle, the mighty jungle
The lion sleeps tonight
Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh…….Near the village, the peaceful village
The lion sleeps tonight
Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh……Hush my darling, don’t fear my darling
The lion sleeps tonight
Wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh, wimoweh…..Ee-e-e-oh-mum-a-weh”
(The Source of song is song titled as ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’)
END

 

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