A poem, a descriptive text that paints the picture of Indian roads.

“Hail to thee, almighty!

Shower your blessings!

O Gracious divine power,

Be Merciful!

We come to you; we praise your might;

We pray to you

Illuminate our lives with your grace!”

The loud sound of drums:

Dum-dum-Dum

Dum-dum-Dum

And the call:

“O Lord benign, power divine, our faith sublime!”

Screaming men, yelling ladies

Confused and crying children

Drummers drumming…..

Behind them:

Thirty cars, forty scooters waiting

Waiting for the cacophonous crowd

To make way;

Waiting and blowing horns incessantly

Cursing themselves and the Lord;

And abusing his noisy devotees

Waiting to get to work on time’

That Work is worship

Didn’t God say?

We’ll travel together

“On the road to success.

We’ll create a better world

For your children to live.

We’ll make the state

Secure for women.

We’ll create employment

For our young ladies and gentlemen.

Better sanitation, drinking water clean.

Your streets will become a picturesque scene.

Vote for us, for we are not politicians mean;

We are your leaders;

We’ll lead you to a brighter future-clean and green.”

Tantalizing us with promises

And trumpets, bugles and drums

Marching on roads

Making noisy declarations

Party-workers shouting aloud

Screaming men, yelling ladies

Dreaming aloud of an ideal future state

The present moment ruined

The head aches

Sympathy for the school children

Stuffed in autos, vans and buses

Waiting to get home and rest

Waiting as the roads are blocked

And our future on the road is stuck!

Now, its time to hear the drum with flute

And with foot-tapping songs;

Listen, the sound of the generator is there too;

The song says:

“Its my friend’s wedding

And I feel as if the whole world is celebrating.”

And there are huge lights glaring bright

Beneath them I can see

A raucous group of people

Dancing round and round

They move their legs and shake their arms

And do a step thrice;

Boisterous men are whistling

Shiny women are laughing

While dancing and whistling and hooting

The road is their stage

But people waiting to go back home are not their audience

Yet, the celebration goes on

Cars, autos, scooters and bikes

Stand in long queues, blaring their horns,

Waiting, the wait is frustrating…

The wedding procession is obstructing…

By Anushree Thareja

 

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