They sit in silence

staring straight ahead

between honking cars,

rickshaws, garbage-lined streets.

Dusty, unwashed children

stream past the glass screen,

and a metallic separation

of illusions and reality.

Waving their wares–

toy cars, balloons, some

pornographic magazines;

their eyes filled with pleas,

a young one says,

“Will you buy this, please?

Ma’am, look at me–

in tatters, hunger drums

in my belly; my siblings as

ravenous as me”.

They just look, eyes fixed

at the windshield,

as tears roll down

the little brown cheeks

on to the pane

by the driver’s seat.

The driver, oh yes,

a man of steel!

Disconnected, unseeing;

his face inscrutable,

hands tapping impatiently

on the steering wheel.


About the Author

Neetu MalikNeetu Malik writes poems, short stories and web content. She was educated in India and Austria. She has traveled and lived in three continents and her writing draws upon her experiences and impressions of cultures, people and the human connection.