September 20, 2012

Mawphlang Sacred Grove, Shillong: And It Was Everything I imagined It To Be.

Arrival. A forest awaits.
Leaves crackled underneath our feet. The lone sound. No bird calls.
Black, lithe limbs arising in a web of a green. We stooped. We jumped.

Moss and Mushroom.

Undisturbed, the forest flourishes. I walked through a jungle.

Flora breeds Flora. An unassuming red orchid.

The thicket leaks an eerie green light.

The tree with the bulbous nose.

Moss covered roots. Do they hide burrows to a Wonderland?

The guide tells us this frail white plant is used in the manufacture of 'incense sticks'.

A fan of red mushroom peeks from a log.

Fallen. Casualty of a storm? Victim of human hands?

A leafy canopy. A green shroud.

Tangled roots.

It conjured images of the Slytherin monster.

Shades of nature. Brown and Green.

Stone relics. Monuments to souls of the past.

I hallucinated. "Snakes!", I screamed.

A rare clearing. A carpet of crunchy, brown leaves.

A pop of clementine. More mushrooms.

Entry and Exit point. "Pray to the forest God before you step in", the guide advises.

Lilliputian yellow suns in a goliath green ground. Pretty flowers.

Soaking in more greenery. Oxygenated. Rejuvenated.

How green IS my valley.

Untamed. Pristine.

The sun-bathers.     

I might visit the Eiffel Tower someday. Or the Pyramids. Even the vast Amazon. But this sacred grove in all its untamed, undisturbed and eerily calm allure will be lodged in my heart as a refuge from modernity, a mystical place where elfs or goblins might be watching from behind shrubs, the pulsing and wildly throbbing heart of nature, and even a Narnia sans the lamp post. I will return, someday.

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