Mailrangam Visvanathan Venkataraman

Rookie - 92 Points (28/08/1959 / Trichy, India)

Two Hour Rail-Journey - Poem by Mailrangam Visvanathan Venkataraman

I was in a very great hurry
Rushing to the Railway Station
When I reached the platform
Pondicherry passenger arrived

I got inside a compartment
There many reserved seats
Not acceptable to Railway Law
As no reservation in this train

Fortunately I occupied a seat
And happened illegal reservation
Whoever came to the seat
Three people made them go away

They reserved nearly four seats
For unavailable passengers
Who were about to board the train
After nearly ten stations

Even educated people were present
And they got totally disappointed
But, only frowning they made
And finally went away with dejection

One very old lady with her grandson
Came to the compartment with a stick
She was by looks fully an illiterate
And she wanted to see those persons

She objected to this type of tricking
And she wanted them to remove bags
When they tried to give an explanation
She protested with full vigor genuinely

I was amazed by her great guts and wits
And these people budged with grudge
She asked them to remove all their bags
So that all could sit very conveniently

Her forehead was smeared with holy ashes
She was wearing worn out gold chain
And also nose-stud and ear-stud in gold
Her finger had the dullest gold ring

She was wearing an ordinary slipper
And her grand son had a plastic watch
When coffee boy came, I ordered a cup
I asked the lady’s grandson whether he wanted

He rejected my offer very innocently
And the lady was secretly watching
Her reaction I was silently noticing
Her observation was almost divinely

When she asked the price of coffee
The coffee boy announced it as Rs.5/
She declined his offer instantaneously
And simply half-closed her old eyes

I wanted to offer her a cup of coffee
But, I was worried about her response
She bought somuza for both of them
And confirmed whether the kid got

I was eager to offer Rs.100/ with love
As the boy was watching the scene
I did not want to corrupt his feelings
My station was about to approach

She behaved like Indira Gandhi
In questioning the wrong reservation
She silently objected and also won
This incident I will never forget

My emotions were choked with regrets
As even young educated women fear
But, this angelic old dame fought
Her face will never leave my brain.

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Poem Submitted: Sunday, April 11, 2010

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