Cars honk: beep, beep, beep
Vendors sell: buy, buy, buy
Bodies crowd: sweat, sweat, sweat
On the smoggy streets of Mumbai.
The sun hovers: loud, loud, loud
behind the haze that drowns, drowns, drowns
the city so that you cannot see, see, see
across the bay, bay, bay.
Heat radiates up, up, up
from the concrete earth, earth, earth
you sizzle like a kabob skewer: grill, grill, grill
your lungs fill, fill, fill
with smoky polluted air, air, air.
You exhale slow, slow, slow
the memories, the nostalgia, free, free, free
to roam open fields and gardens and train rides past rice paddies
they fly, fly, fly
by your cab, cab, cab
and it’s clear:
that’s over, now is different.