Monday, 17 December 2007

And somewhere in Mumbai...

My hands move slowly. Here they are now. Here it is now, what is it, oh yes, it’s a sheet. Here you are now. I am covering you with this sheet. Who are you I have forgotten. But the month I remember is December. It might get cold. Here is the sheet. Here are my hands, and here you are, lying down here. What is this here? Yes, it’s the pavement on the side of the road. Why are you lying down here? I ask you, tell me now, why are you lying down here. Why do my hands move so slowly? Are you asleep? Are you my son, are you my father, are you my brother? I really don’t remember. But the month is December, this I know and remember. We went to a bar, I remember, I don’t think I would have gone there with my son. Perhaps you are a friend. But what is this? White hair? Maybe you are an uncle. We talked. About what I cannot say. But we talked. And look, those cars that are passing us, people inside are talking too. They seem friendly. Here, I waved at them. They turned their faces away though. I don’t understand, why would they do that? Is it me? Is it you? Is it the two of us on this pavement by the side of the road and you lying here and me covering you with a sheet? Is that a shameful thing? Is it the drink? Did we drink too much, does it show on our faces? On our hands? Is it this, our home, with the sky as the roof. Should I be ashamed of it? Are you ashamed, is that why you are sleeping lying here on the pavement with your white hair and your legs out on the road. There, I moved them in. No one will drive by in a lorry and slice away your feet now. There. Are you comfortable? Who is that woman in the car? Why does she watch us with pity? Oh why does she pity us? Here, I looked away, I could not bear her eyes of pity. Will you share the sheet with me? Its December, the month. Its night. The sky is bright. I need to sleep. I need …

6 comments:

choxbox said...

gave me goosebumps.

AirSpy said...

very reflective of our current times - what with sixteen year olds in Mercs callously mowing down three folks sleeping on the sidewalk ....rich dads with rich lawyers...there needs to be a voice for all those unknown folks, as you say, sans any pity..that will awaken some dormant conscience in all the 'privileged' ones

kbpm said...

cb-
it brought sharp tears to my eyes when i saw it. which of course, is very foolish of me.

airspy-
true. pity is no good. need something else.

choxbox said...

hey how did it go? did the cute monster get her pink barbie and dupatta?

kbpm said...

cb-
no of course no barbie. got her a nice Lego set which is a big hit, she has not been separated from it for days now.
we have a series of salwar kameezes that we can release for such eventualities, so the purple & yellow one was released.
so that is one hurdle crossed, one battle one, some semblance of dignity retained.

choxbox said...

congrats and may you win more battles!

- a war-ravaged co-sufferer