Sunday, July 12, 2009

6:22 Slow to Borivili

the train worms its way
into the mouth at Dadar,
wheels chewing in and
chewing out suburban track;
stations speck the distance
one route or the other.

the platform seems to float,
half-empty, like early morning
dreams or the inside of
a church after mass, bathed in
an aftermath of quiet, buoyant
with breathing-space.

the engine ploughs to a halt;
a slipshod crowd steps
back from the concrete edge,
converges quickly at the equally
spaced mobs
hanging from,
and hiding,
the doors.

sunlight surprises faces
spent looking out years
of locomotive windows.

the 6:22 travels at the pace
of a footnote, tunnelling
the collapsing slipstream
of the 6:21 fast, a lesser twin
trailing the trembling shadows
of speed, an afterthought

on sedatives shunting
through quicksilver evening,
trundling into sanatoriums
for the straggling, where
commotion is thin and
withdrawn, where the air

is already stale with the
distress sweat of waiting.

milliseconds later, it mows
onwards, motors humming,
to Matunga. inside, subdued
acceleration drums
the ears; electric smoke
shrills the nostrils; commuters

pinch inches, eyeballs
slapped stuck together:

slow-and-steady tortoises
squeezed inside a glove
compartment, shoving,
climbing, testing

each other's shells, cajoled
into a play for patience
in this caravan of twelve
aluminium cages that
at least doesn't flee
before it arrives.

1 comment:

Saad Shaikh said...

hey.. that was good..

I did not know for sure this could come of a 6:22 BVLI Slow.. :P

I have always had a very dreary perception of Mumbai Locals.. and fast trains are sick.. :D

Seriously dude.. awesome.. :)