Poem: A good city to fall in love

Bombay is a good city to fall in
love. My lover lives eight train
stations and two full bus-stops
away. Ten rupees of distance
between us.

Courage comes easy. The city
pocked with couples, suspended
in amour. Wet monsoon shivers,
filling streetfood. Midday reads
to share.

Obstacles, like the sour smell
of suburban shit, humidity, the
crowded train. All defeated by
young love. Bombay, yes, is a
good city.

We spread handkerchiefs, sit
on them. One hand held, the
other, busy eating something.
By the sea, you explain, we can
sit forever.

But the beggars, and the sunset,
respective waiting rooms, dying
rush hour, ease us off the sand.
This is the restrained, timed love
of office-goers.

At Churchgate, I kept looking
at your growingly tiny face. My
local pulling out. I am already
fifty paisa away from you. Yes,
I love you.



Filed under Photographs, Poetry and Fiction

28 Responses to Poem: A good city to fall in love

  1. Such a lovely end! “Growingly tiny face.” “Fifty paisa away from you.” Nice!

  2. Crazyfinger

    I must write this in a bit more detail. What stood out immediately for me was that: “the city pocked with couples, suspended in amour”

    Mercurial is the word that comes to mind. I mean to have used the word, “pocked” here, is such an entirely reassuring thing to read. Reassuring for the likes of me who like a bit of a jagged edge here and there.

    “the city pocked with couples” is a phrase that is entirely on a different plane…than “suspended in amour”

    “city pocked with couples” is so many meanings. “Pocked” is a word of burden; a word of yucky; a word of also ornamental; also of being small poxed; of chicken poxed; of being boiled all over the skin; pocked also as in bedecked…

    Here you go again, with your amazingly intuitive grasp of what is X and what is ~X at the same time.

    (yes, yes, no doubt you weren’t “thinking” like this when you wrote this. But let me dance a bit too…:-))

    Thanks for this poem. Good things happen in pastel greens.

    Regards, Crazyfinger

  3. MKKD

    Export quality. Sigh!

  4. “This is the restrained, timed love of office-goers.”

    Wow. Beautiful poem.

  5. dipali

    so beautiful…as usual I’m rendered speechless by your poetry!

  6. Lovely ! Lovely ! Could relate to it and has a fabulous flourish finish !

  7. Vinod Joseph

    Absolutely brilliant and very poignant.

  8. Lovely poem!

    Though I’d still prefer not to live in Moombhai.

    If I were a poet, I’d try writing something similar for Pune. ;)

  9. Hi neha,

    My lover lives eight train
    stations and two full bus-stops
    away. Ten rupees of distance
    between us.

    but none knows real distance
    those hearts are always near
    as one’s breath can
    touch each other
    that is the love
    which i lost very long ago
    very long ago, before
    my birth….

    good template ! it looks cool for eyes, and very much readable.

    Keep in touch


  10. Time to move back to Bombay…

  11. ajee kuch apne gurgawan ke liye bhee likh dijiye.. :p

  12. Nice poem. I would end it at “I am already
    fifty paisa away from you.”

    Also, in the middle of the poem..”Bombay, yes, is a
    good city.” I would put the whole title in…i.e. “Bombay, yes, is a
    good city to fall in love”.

    Not nit-picking..just some suggestions to make it even more effective – not that you asked for it but its just a habit of mine since I frequent (or used to) poetry forums from time to time and always look to make a good poem even better.

    I do not comment on poems that I do not like. This one is one of the really good ones I have read.

  13. Priya

    Dear Neha,
    I Love Mumbai.
    What a beautiful place…

  14. km

    Wow-ee. Excellent.

    //The Fragrances of Mahim Creek deserve no mention, eh?

  15. you made me fall in love.. just a little bit, with a city i dont really like…. and i love the new template

  16. hi neha,

    Have you wondered why Bombay is called the City which never sleeps but is also the City of Dreams, I guess everyone must be dreaming in the local trains where your all by yourself inspite of all the crowd.

    I think if you love Bombay, Bombay loves you back…followed by a few cups of cutting chai n brun maska in an Irani Hotel wid someone you can live and fight all life :))

  17. Oh I love this! Ten rupees of distance, fifty paisa away from you…. oh

  18. Pingback: Great Poem by Neha Viswanathan « When Was the Last Time You Did Something For the First Time

  19. Uma

    Did I say that English poems don’t evoke the same strong feelings in me as the Tamil ones? I suppose its time for me to eat my words :)

  20. Wow! I am overwhelmed by the response to this poem. Thank you all so much!!

  21. Neha – what a wonderful little poem – the true bombayite in you speaks to me so vividly!

  22. Cool…I love the city and so does the poem of yours ;)
    A friend showed me this way…
    Keep writing

  23. You have covered the true spirit of Mum(bhai) in your poem.This is what the city is all about..Trains,Rush,People on their toes ….List goes on :)

    (Blogger at http://thoughtsprevail.blogspot.com)

  24. Rakesh

    Brilliant and Evocative. I spent my college years in Mumbai. This poem brings back the film of dust, colour, shine through the grime of memory. Thanks for this.

  25. “I am already fifty paisa away from you”
    Loved it.