Monday, 21 November 2016

Origins


by Brian Mendonca

In the heart of India
at the midnight hour
One can always return
to where one started from
if one wishes.
Vasco
or Delhi
depending
on what you consider
your point of origin
at that point of time.
On the margin of night
or the break of day.

(Jhansi station, 2007)

Self-Published by the poet in A Peace of India: Poems in Transit (New Delhi, 2011) page 30.

Note:
19313 Indore-Patna Express derails near Kanpur at about 03.00 a.m. on Sunday 20th November 2016. Passengers reported a loud sound under S1 coach at Jhansi hours before the incident. This poem is uploaded as an elegy to the travellers who lost their lives on the train. Pix courtesy jhansitimes.com

'Origins' was written in 2007 while travelling in the 12779 Goa Express from Vasco, Goa to Hazrat Nizamuddin station, New Delhi.  It was written at midnight at Jhansi station. The scheduled arrival of The Goa Express at Jhansi station is 23.50 and departure is 23.58. As I got down from the train - having already spent more than a day in it - I noticed the 12190  Nizamuddin-Jabalpur Mahakoshal Express standing on the platform opposite. The scheduled arrival of the Mahakoshal Express at Jhansi station is 22.50, departing at 23.15. Homesick for Goa,  I consoled myself I need not be bound by predetermined destinations. I was free to return home -- in my own time.

In the same year I travelled by the Mahakoshal Express to Jabalpur to view Bhedaghat and the mighty Narmada river in Madhya Pradesh.

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