A girl standing in a mint green sharara
Wearing makeup far beyond her years
Weeping inconsolably. In the breathless choking way of the young.
And my shared taxi moves on
Another frame floats in front of my eyes.
A boy sits at a bus stand.
It is all steel and he sits exactly where the previous owner sat
The steel is warm and slightly forgiving there.
His legs dangle, the bench is too high for any Indian
Another copy paste
Of the West
His cloth sneakers are fashionable
His jeans hang sufficiently low
But neither his swagger
Nor the colourful laces hide
The ripped soles
And broken zips.
There, I see a blue tempo
Full of three boys and two vacant-eyed men
They lean against the usual fare of migrants
A striped gadda rolled up, utensils,
a broken cooker, ragged bundles of clothes
Two phavda, every workman needs his tools after all.
Three girls take a selfie there
Near the man who sits on the footpath sellking helmets
shaded by a rainbow-coloured umbrella.
A government building decomposes
in its own apathy
While the raintrees indulge with their canopy.
Shanthi Kitchen Slabs Works sits next to Bosch
Another new app is quietly announced
And the city flits past
contradictions marry cliches
As I close my eyes
to unsee the sounds
that drown me in an anonymous