The Other Side of the Taj Mahal

Face peers into the open doorway of the bus.
Back views rise to gleaming reflections of
White marble opulence of the Taj Mahal.

A gnarled hand thrust out hopefully,
Eyes muddy, liverish, deep set in a void.
A beggar casting broken-limbs and scars
To fish on faces.

Shaking heads sweat vanishing cream.
Eyes are magnets pulled towards
Irresistible forces.

Guilt itches rest on a seat of comfort.
Thoughts of touching deformed flesh,
Passing coins through disinfected air to
A bottom rung where dirt scrapes off.

Sinking deeply into padded cushions,
Breathing in nostrils conditioned air,
Removed to a safe cocoon world
By the jolt of the closing doors.

Martin Jervis

About the poet: Martin Jervis lives in Leeds , England . His poetry has been published in numerous journals in the UK , the United States , Canada , Australia and Europe . He spends part of the year in India and has written a series of poems with an Indian theme. White Leaf Review has published an ebook The Citron House in 2007. He is currently completing a book of collected works.