Rites of Morning

I took the train to the slum this morning. It was a long commute. But I shared my ipod with some school kids and we listened to Krishna Das — the only relatively indian-style music i have — Om Namah Shivaya. In the woman’s compartment it’s not as popular to lean over the edge of the doorway, hanging on to the chained, iron hand-hold. But I like witnessing the morning rituals of the Mumbai haze. The activity on the track. Feeling the wind from my cockroach-y compartment I see where they grow the greens in this city, the spinach, the root veg; all along the track there are garden plots, tended to by the poor. Nearby, a few yards away, people are defecating. As the train speeds by, they don’t look up, it’s usual, it’s common, and it makes the salad’s served at restaurant’s a trifle unsettling in the gut. The proximity factor, of the garden from the make shift, wherever-you-like toilet of the tracks.

And at the slum, the children hum. And Darshi falls in love over and over again.

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