Symbols of the world's religions



Mani S. Irani


There was a bus, so blue was she,
No sky or hill can bluer be.
Oh, that time we met her first,
With joy my heart did nearly burst.

She travelled north, she travelled south,
East and west and round about.
Many a place she's wandered to;
She was a gypsy through and through.

Once she started, nothing could stop her.
She raced from Bangalore right to Gersoppa.
While that trip from Dehra Dun to Quetta
Was too thrilling to express by word or letter.

She'd glide o'er valleys so green to the sight,
Or through the black jungles up to nearly midnight.
Sometime over roads as smooth as glass,
You'd think they were really too good to pass.

Next moment such shocking roads would meet —
With rage the bus would rattle her teeth.
While the poor occupants cramped in her belly
Would shake like the finest McHorton jelly.

What one couldn't help admiring was her Herculean will
Once she made up her mechanical mind to stand still.
She'd stop on a mountain or ditch of water
Or any old place that her fancy caught her.

Or when she was tired (just a pain in the head)
She would stop to rest in a soft river bed;
And twenty bullocks with humps and all
Could but hardly make her move at all.

Sometimes on the journey I've heard her groan,
And squeak and clatter in every bone;
But the winters she put up with, no doubt,
May have given her a formal touch of gout.

In spite of that she was a cheerful bird;
For whenever you wished, you could have heard
Such laughter and songs inside that'd make yer
Think she was a travelling radio.

Sometimes arguments and Oh, such fuss;
I wonder what the dear old bus thought of us.
She must have often been tickled quite a good bit,
For often we've heard her tyre-sides split.

What beats me is the way she always grew bigger,
Not that it made any difference to her figure.
But with bhagulas and pails forever increasing
And fainting and freezing, potatoes and sneezing;
Laughing, singing, shouting and snuff,
One would have thought she had had enough!

But not once did she let her dignity fall;
She'd "swallow it down" with a gulp of petrol.
And however ridiculous our number may be,
She'd remark with a smile that's cheerful to see,
"Get in my dears, and don't mind me."

But those were the days when she was younger;
And now she rests in peaceful slumber.
Soothing her shattered iron nerves,
Digesting a rest she truly deserves.

Ah! Separation has made my heart quite sore!
But I shall not endeavor to say much more.
For dear memories are never dead,
And things understood are better unsaid.


POEMS TO AVATAR MEHER BABA, pp. 20-21, ed. Ben Leet & Steve Klein
1985 © Manifestation, Inc.


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