Migrant’s Daughter talks to Mother

Image courtesy Amit Dave | Reuters

 

Where’s that planet Ma, the one you speak of?

Is it Buddha, Sukra, or Mangala?

Where we need to walk just twenty

miles a day to get to our hut.

Daughter, please sleep, I am tired.

 

That planet ma, where it’s  cloudy  even at noon

So our heads won’t burn soon,

where roads are so smooth you said

no feet ever bled

and plenty of  drinking water

Am tired, sleep daughter.

 

How many more miles Ma in these wilds?

Four hundred forty three child!

Is that more than what we’ve done?

Child we walked just four hundred and one.

 

Dawn

Daughter now we won’t get stuck

Thank the mantris we are in a truck

Amit Shahji, Smriti Irani

But Ma, yeh kaisi virani

some of our friends in a cement mixer!

Child, Let them run amok

thank ministers we are in a truck.

 

CRASH !! That was an accident daughter.

Who are these Ma, they don’t move

They traveled with us, now they are dead.

We are twenty miles nearer our hearth.

Have we reached a planet Ma?

 

Child, we are on our planet, Prithvi, Earth.

Keki Daruwalla is a Delhi-based poet and writer. He received the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1984 and the Commonwealth Poetry Prize for Asia in 1987.