Get it India head
This is no bed
Of roses
Poses in prime positions
Are sublime repetitions
Of what has gone

Karma comes knocking
Falling flat on your face
Bindis race
First fast then erased
From your forehead
Forever more

Rickshaws run a mockery
Round rubbled ruins
Of modern mishapes
Monarchy’s mistakes
Perfect pictures of

What everyone tells you
Pre plane departure
Setting one belief in front of another
One foot behind
Is what it does
To your stomach
Shaking heads full of
Heavy sighs

Cares to be taken
Clothes to be carried in case
For climactic changes
Of course
What to withstand
When to be undeterred

When to stand your ground
Back down, barter
Busk your way through town
What to battle over
Where to bathe and how
When to show the colour
Of your mother’s money

How to save a dollar
Raise a rupee
Meditate on more that
You could Be
Do the deed
Be caught in times of need
Phone home and find
No-one waiting for your call

All of this and more
You carry on your back
A rucksack full of love and
Missed kisses
But – the greatest part of this is
What no-one tells you –
What it does
To your heart

What you find
When your mind adjusts
And your eyes unwind
And great gusts of understanding blow you free
When you hand over the key
To your list of demands
And give in
To the easy unplanned

Imploring looks
Hook your sympathy
Bait you easily at first
The worst
Are always
The kids
Thing is, how could you deny them?

Soon enough
Is enough
Look mister, I ain’t no fool
And I ain’t a millionaire either –
Leave her alone and go
Thing is, how could you feed them all?

You triumph on trains
Blaspheme the buses
The driver’s on drugs
Or a suicide trip
You skip rice-based breakfasts
For weeks
Seek out cereals then
Suddenly…you don’t

Chinking chai glasses
Chomping on chocolate
A lot
More than most
Coasting roads
Filled with cows
On a scooter scuffed with sand
And stuffed to bursting point

Dogs with holes in
Infecting imaginations
Over masala dosa
Noses signalling distaste
This taste?
Hmm, tamarind – trees?
Try over there
Between the neem and the new banana circle…

Too many memories to mention
There’s always one question
When you return to the beginning
Grinning, they ask
How was it?
But how can you say
It was everything
You’ve never seen

Get it?
Get it India
But be warned…
You may never
Get her

July 2009 – Brighton, UK


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