Category Archives: Labour

All in a day’s work -1


One of those countless times when I had got busy with something else, while cooking something in a pressure cooker….the safety valve had melted.

I have been meaning to take the lid to the nearby shop to get a new valve fixed …but you know how it is.

Then this guy came along with all the paraphernalia for repairing gas stoves and cookers,accomodated on his rickety cycle.

The lid got fixed .

The burners of the stove, which too I had been meaning to get replaced as they had developed cracks, got replaced.

Took a nice sum from me on the claim that it was brass.

I did have an inkling that he was making that up even as he asked me to weigh them in my hand and emphasising how much more heavier they were compared to the discarded ones made from iron .

The valve too, he charged twice as much .I know that for sure because I had paid for an earlier replacement from the shop in the neighbourhood.

The paint came off after the first flames made the metal glow with heat .

And I fumed for a while at being knowingly taken in.

And then I thought of him, doing the rounds the whole day.

And I thought of all the merry rides we consumers are taken on by the fancy outlets and the corporate brands

And I forgave myself.



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The hand that rocks the cradle

The Winter’s air cannot chill you love,

For you were born to me

So bear the cold, till days improve

Wait, wait patiently.

My arms are weak from daily toil

Yet rest is forbidden now.

From labour and sweat I cannot recoil

For I must see you grow.

So lie under this tree , where I can watch

While I carry these bricks and sand .

I’ll wrap you in these rags or a cold you’ll catch

Hush! don’t cry, for I’m near at hand.

Perhapsthe future will be more benign

Perhaps our sweat will speak

And our lives will be free from hunger and pain

Till then your patience keep.

Till then, dear child, brave this chilly wind

Leaving you now , I must go.

Against whom or how, we have sinned

I just can’t fathom now.

Doomed am I to this fate

But you must grow and discern

Why some have delicacies heaped on their plates

While some for bread crumbs yearn.

P.S The images used in this post were taken from the internet.


Posted by on May 1, 2011 in Community, Labour, Poetry


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