The Lost Salary

Anand was a happy man today. He had counted his salary twice as it gave him a nice feeling as his fingers touched the crispy notes. After all it, it would not remain with him for long. He checked the wad of notes in his pocket when he climbed on the bus, once more while he was seated and when he left the bus at his door step. Thank God, it was still there, but he knew, all these would disappear soon. He wondered if inflation was the main thief in the country.

“Good evening Anand, you look a happy man today, am sure it is the salary, ” remarked the grocer Dayal, to whom Anand owed a month of grocery bills. “How much do I owe you, Dayalji? asked Anand bringing out the wad of notes. Painfully he parted with almost 20 percent of his salary. As he approached the gate of his housing society, he saw Ramu, the milkman with big milky teeth, waiting with glee on his arrival. As they parted, another 1500 had vanished from the crispy notes. The measure of happiness had already started vanishing along with the size of the wad of notes.

The society office boy came next day morning well in time to catch him before he left for the office to collect the monthly charges. Anand’s wife asked him to keep a 1000 for the cooking gas cylinder that might arrive any day. Just as he wanted to contain any more spends, he bumped into the newspaper boy who collected another 750 for his 2 newspapers that satisfied his morning ablutions.

With the electricity bill giving him a shock, as he paid it at the electricity office, Anand wondered how many more debits awaited him, now that a paltry sum remained from the salary he received, a few days back. On the train, the ticket checker asked for his ticket or pass, which he promptly showed. The checker handed it back with a smile. Only when he was putting it back, trying to make meaning out of the smile, he noticed, that the pass was expiring the next day. That means another set of notes would vanish tomorrow.

The second day evening, coming back from office,  he saw boys at his apartment complex trying to get a tangled kite from the network of television cables. Anand called the cable boys lest these kids might wreck havoc on the cables. They arrived in minutes but only left after collecting their monthly due payment.

Anand was now left counting as to what remained and if he had enough money to survive the rest of the month after provisioning for miscellaneous expenses like bus fare, school fees, vegetables and fish at the market where they would not give him credit. Despite the lost salary, he firmly decided with the next salary he would buy a small camera, a thought he had been cherishing for so long…

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Voice of a City

sounds-of-my-city
Credits: SoundCloud 


Tinker of the milk man whose tampering

has broken daily, fresh water records.

The chime of the fruit seller cart where

the fruits were painted in the morning.

The gas cylinders unloaded nearby when

you had ordered one, a fortnight ago.

The newspaper thrown at your door by

the boy who vanishes into thin air daily.

The school bus honking, when the lunch

of kids is still made by the half-maid.

The laundry man dropping your clothes

wearing them before he returns to you.

The fish monger who pedals his bicycle

with lot of fresh ice in his long dead fish.

The lime pickle vendor with his  jarring

having a mix of all except those lemons.

The mat seller who dusts his rugs for you

claiming the dust was picked in Kashmir.

The fire engine arriving at the front door

to contain raging fires at the back door.

The crows cawing out for their daily food

Voice of a city, a craving now, left in life. 

Poem in Vain

 

All the while me and my wife Jane

Had dream’t of flying to far off Spain
tickets we did not obtain in any plane

She asked how the dream would sustain
I told her we could always get a train
that passed through the terrain of Spain

We had barely got into a  crowded train
when it started to mighty heavily rain
having the crowd seeming so insane
only one person Jane,  she looked sane.

When I started looking at her again
she seemed to be in some sort of pain
efforts to reach to her were all in vain
when, of a sudden, our train hit a crane
that somehow got stuck in wet terrain.

We seemed to lose contents of our brain
comforting, as in, no gain without pain,
could you tell, amid tears, are we in Spain?
the strain was much, though, to ascertain
we looked like people hit with dirt cocaine
though in our plan was, old Champagne…

P.S
This poem came to me with the recent rains in Bahrain.

 

The Lovely Clown

etsy
Pic Courtesy: Etsy.com

A famous actor once came to party in town
a crowd went to him that included a clown
who appeared quite shabby in a long gown
which was torn and colored dusty brown
shaking hands, the actor was seen to frown
at a sad painted face decked with a crown
all of a sudden who pushed the actor down
who fell  into the deep pool about to drown
hands that pulled him up were of the clown

Sounds of a City

The tinkering of the milk man whose tampering

with your milk has broken all fresh water records.

The artistic chime of the cart  of vegetables

that the vendor has painted in the morning.

The gas cylinders getting unloaded nearby

when you had ordered one, a fortnight ago.

The newspaper thrown at your door by the

boy who vanishes into thin air everyday.

The school bus horn, when your kid’s

lunch box is still made by the half-maid.

The laundry man who comes for your clothes

and wears them before returning it to you.

The fish monger who pedals his bicycle

with lots of fresh ice in his long dead fish.

The mango pickle vendor carrying jars

having a mix of everything except mangoes.

The mat seller who drapes himself in the rugs

that he claims are hand-picked from Kashmir.

The fire engine that arrives at your back door

to contain the fire that is raging in the front door.

The ambulance that comes with a blaring horn

just as you slip into a coma with a glaring wound…