The coal laden hinterlands

awaken sheepishly to the rumbling of trucks and heavy vehicles on crumbling roads.

The skies for once show their true colours because later on during the day

dust rises between my eyes and the expanse of air in front.

All the trees wear a grumpy brown,

as if they would shrink if you touch them

or blast forth a torrent of soot chiding me for disturbing them on their winter naps.

I wonder often,

If someone ever thought of digging up graves,

and mining coal out of the lungs of the dead people of Dhanbad.

There’d be enough coal for the next ten years.

Graveyards would see their property prices soaring.

This cannot possibly happen though,

most of us say goodbye on pyres,

Our bodies becoming one with the flames,

the smoke and ash once again,

fills up the air I breathe.

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