Thursday, 30 January 2020

I saw Gandhiji yesterday.

I saw Gandhiji yesterday.

He was tall. He wore torn jeans.

He was dressed for office, and over his buttoned-up cuffs a steel kada gleamed at his wrist.

His bangles were red, and his bindi was blue, and the Lion King roared on his t-shirt.

He was in hijab, and he had just come from the temple, I could tell:  his tika was fresh.

He had a bright yellow turban, a white topi, and white hair in a neat bun.

He was clean-shaven, and had a sharp goatee, and glasses - but not those round ones. He was just about eight years old, and well over eighty.

He was wrapped up against the bitter cold, and stood sweating in the sun.

He carried a rose, he carried a sign, he carried our hope and dignity and constitution.

Every time I looked, there he stood, at Town Hall and Azad Maidan and Shaheen Bagh, and he looked back at me and smiled. Smiled like he knew me, like he recognised me, although we had never met before.

When I went home, I discovered why.

I bent at the tap to wash the dust off my face, and when I straightened up, there he was again in the mirror, still smiling at me.

I saw Gandhiji yesterday.

I slept better last night, knowing he's around.

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