Stubby little fingers feeding pigeons perched on a loft beneath the window sill.
The rotund pushing the frail aside; how she wished she could feed them all.
Her mother calls and she scurries, across the terrace that singed her bare feet.
She plows into a massive form and yet she cannot wait or stall.
Mother hands a note that says ‘pint of milk’ with a rupee and sends her off.
Papers dancing in trifling whirl winds, open drains with paper boats.
Cycle skidding in the dust, hawker selling sullied ice cream cones,
And when a scarce car whooshes by,
The urchins race across to break their bones.
The counter-top at general store is too high;
The peddler smiles at enormous eyes and knows their name.
He hands the change and while she gawks;
At neat stacks of jars with soggy biscuits and lollipops;
He wonders if she ever talks.
She flits back home, she hands the change.
Twenty years subsequent, she gazes at buildings with a hundred floors, watching the sun skim windows on building tops.
Still haunted by native dust and smelly alleys, lazy street dogs and broken kites;
Insufferably longing for soggy biscuits and lollipops.