No one

You have no heroes.
No one makes your large eyes
grow wider. No one entices you
to open the old biscuit tin
and retrieve dusty coins.
No one is worth the pink,
still uncreased two-rupee note
tucked into the back zip
of your brown rexine purse.
Careful collections are not squandered
on flimsy cassette tapes
that catch and unwind
in the wheezy National Panasonic.
You do not elbow strangers
jostling to catch sight of someone.
You do not fantasise
of being spotted in the melee,
your glow visible under the talc of urban dust.
You do not smile shyly at posters
in which his lips are too red,
his cheeks too pink,
his curls imagined and exaggerated.
You do not match your dupatta
to the yellow of his shirt
in that song.

You laugh at me instead,
say I am silly. Starry-eyed.
Mere dreams, you call them.
I know you have nightmares
of drowning. At least
in mine, I am rescued.

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