Winter in the City

Here’s something I had written earlier, forgotten about completely, and rediscovered recently. Since summer is still marauding us these days, I think publishing a poem about winter still makes sense.

After all, aren’t we all in a perpetual yearning for the beautiful days of the past or the beautiful days of tomorrow? Aren’t we all just looking for an escape even when we know there isn’t one?


Winter in the City

It is morning, and I’m out already,

Heading slowly in the rickshaw,

Winter has come belatedly,

But as the saying goes,

It has come in earnest,

To a city too removed to notice.

 

There’s a breeze that reminds me of home,

That stands tall among the mountains of Kumaon,

It is chilly, but pleasant,

It seems to bring back life to my lungs,

And, for once amidst the smoke of this city,

I breathe.

 

The sun, too, seems benevolent,

And sprinkles its rays upon us,

Kindly, they touch my skin and warm my soul,

When otherwise, through the year,

They seem intent to burn,

Now, they bless.

 

There’s a lightness of being,

An abandonment of worries for a while,

There seems to be, instead, much to learn,

From the way sunshine distills through the fog,

And dances upon the Earth with the breeze,

It seems that this is what Life is all about.

 

A loving laziness seems to have descended,

As they stroll in their sweaters and monkey caps,

Old couples, the work of their life done,

Discussing animated the price of onions or some such,

And laughing at the anecdotes of that trip to Goa,

Which neither remembers nor have forgotten.

 

And some young girl, swelled with her beauty,

Languidly sways her open hair, and flicks them,

Droplets of water shimmer, or perhaps it is wine,

She knows what it is, and she smiles knowingly,

When our eyes meet accidentally at the rickshaw stand,

She turns and flicks them, and turns and smiles,

 

I follow her, catch up, and we walk besides each other, silent,

The wind is cool, the sun is pleasant, even the dogs quiet,

But suddenly there’s a tumult, and a hundred people getting off a train,

Pushing and rushing, an unstoppable mass, and it wakes me up,

I check my watch – it is time – and rush to catch it,

I must reach work on time, winters can wait!

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