Bombay is a Poem


Bombay is a poem

A poem with no rhyme

Bombay is a painting

A painting with no lines

Bombay is bhel-puri

A delicious mixture

Bombay is like the ocean

Far too vast to capture

Here, religions merge

Into one blinding haze

Identities are hidden beneath

The city’s frantic craze

The Muslims are at Mahalaxmi

The Hindus, Haji Ali

Sikhs and Jains and Buddhists

In every little galli

At a Buddhist temple

A man with big brown eyes

Showed us the white Buddha, and said,

“This is where the truth lies”

The hair on my arm rose

I was mesmerised

By this temple, by this faith

By what I saw inside

After a minute of absolute silence

We set out again,

To Haji Ali

With one recorder, a camera and a pen.

At this dargah we found stories

Of religion and Bombay

Hearing these I was jolted

I had nothing left to say

Markandeshwar temple

Had a priest with grey hair

He had on a thin white dhoti,

Which looked like it just might tear

The temple was serene

With the sea on all four sides

In this city by the sea,

Religions are free and don’t need to hide

Amar, Akbar, Anthony Chowk

With honking buses and cars

At night the Christian cross illuminates the soul,

 Even brighter than the stars

Interviewing people in Bombay

We saw religion through their eyes

And somewhere I think

We got answers to a million hows and whys

We went on a quest

And, we know now,

That everyone in Bombay

Comes together somehow

Somewhere in all this madness

There is a story the city tells

When Mumbaikars are at peace with each other

They will find peace within themselves


5 Comments for this post

  1. It's a good post.

  2. Hhaahaha. I?m not too bright today. Great post!

  3. Hhaahaha. IÂ?m not too bright today. Great post!

  4. this poem shows me the city in a way the tourist never sees. what a celebration and what an insight. So we can "all just get along"!

  5. Absolutely fantastic! so beautifully composed. If I were the mayor of the city of Bombay, I would print this in my brochure for the tourists. No, the poem is actually much deeper than that. I would print it on a large plaque and install it by Queen's Necklace at Marine Drive so the crowd that gathers there at sunset can contemplate and appreciate it! Proud of you guys and the talent displayed in this poem!

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