What Saved My Soul/Alok Dhanwa

What saved my soul
Light from some cheap candles

A couple of boiled potatoes

bonfire of dry leaves,
and earthen pots
beds of straw
and the straw coloured moon
the vagrant boys of street plays
wearing fragments
the sound of their voice like that of Truth
chasing away rioters
from every corner,
theatre, and restless acting like wet cloth
learnt from gallant Hindustanis

little Hamid bringing back tongs
for grandma from the Eidgah*
and after 6th December**
till sometime before February
wild jujubes
saved my soul.

*refers to one of the popular Hindustani short stories by Premchand: Eidgah

** On 6th December, 1992, Babari Masjid was demolished.

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