Monthly Archives: August 2013

My Mumbai Colleague

My Mumbai Colleague

Like you,

I am a journalist


Like you,

I visit many places

For work


Some lonely

Some crowded

Some in the evening


Like you

I was an intern

When I was 22


Tasting the new success

After a college education

Exploring my world


Like you

I was a professional

Doing my job


Like you

If my assignment was in the mills

I would have gone


Like you

I would have never thought

I would be violated on my job


Fight, my sister

Be brave

For all of us


Don’t listen to anyone

Who says

That you were


In the wrong place

At the wrong time

Or in the wrong clothes


It wasn’t you

My Mumbai colleague

It’s them


They were in the wrong place

At the wrong time

With the wrong intentions


It’s not your shame

It’s not your izzat

It’s not your family’s honour


That they took

Who hunted

In a pack


It’s their’s

They should be ashamed

Of being worse than animals


They assumed

That they were



But they are wrong

You are a woman

Shakti Chandi Durga


Rise, my sister

In your fight

I hold your hand


Like the girl on

December 16

Jolt us out


Of apathy

Of desensitization

Of nothing-can’t-be-done attitude


Fight the fight

For all of us

My Mumbai Colleague







My Mumbai Colleague

So they know


They don’t have

Any power

Over you



Because it’s your life

To live


Poetry written for this fellow journalist


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Filed under India, Poetry


Death is black

It is quick

It is slow


What does it taste like?

It’s like the salty tears

Which never stop flowing


It tastes like black soyabean

Which hungry children

Once ate


It’s in the mud

Which covers the graves

Of small bodies


It’s in the guttural cries

Of a wailing mother

And a stoic father


It smells like school books

Whose pages haven’t been turned

New, unused forever


It’s in an empty classroom

Where human life ceases to exist

And stray dogs sleep


It’s in a village

Which mourns the loss

Of its future


It’s in the empty playground

Where six friends once played

Now buried together


It’s in the eyes of a grandfather

It’s in the heart of a mother

And in the silence of a sister who cheated it


It’s in the green fields

And blue skies

And a pond which reflects everything


It’s in the apathy

And desensitization

Of the hordes who die, anyway


And the – oh, those poor children

So sad they died

It was somewhere in India, right?



One month after the Mid Day Meal tragedy where 23 children died.

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Filed under India, Poetry