I encountered two boys in school uniform
on their squeaking bicycles,
perhaps with unoiled chains.
One was small on a rather smaller bicycle.
The other, I hardly noticed.
He passed through me like a current of young age.
The small one saluted to an Army jawan wielding a functioning gun, unlike the weapon of the local police.
The man in camouflage was deployed at the end of the street for election duty.
The child’s salute was returned with a rugged smile.
How come I did not do?
Perhaps the absence of childlike delight prevented a humble salute!
Written by: Minu Jasdanwala