An old timer remembers

Sunil Sharma


The high-rises there.

Once, till few years ago,

Those were the fields

Worked by the farmers.

Paddy fields that added to the

Greenery created by

The magic of the full monsoons.

Small patches where vegetables were grown

And small ponds with the bent palm trees

Catching the gentle moon-beams.

We walked down to that paradise in the suburban Mumbai

Smelling the earth, after every first rains.

There were trees around and bird-songs



All that is gone!

Only buildings rising up

As bald giants


The untouched

Few clumps of trees

Covered in the soot and exhaust,

Only concrete roads with crazy traffic

All divine songs gone.

Floods of 2005

That drowned Mumbai.

Tsunamis, most places.

Toxic air.

Warmer winters.

Cooler summers.

And the monsoon of 2018


Residents in metros

Pay for the crimes

Of the greedy builder lobby

That kills: The mangroves; ponds; fields

And the maternal trees that nurture cultures

But these developers, sadly,

Always forget to plant.

(Credit: Contemporary Literary Society)

This entry was posted in Poetry on by .

About Sunil Sharma

Sunil Sharma is Mumbai-based senior academic, critic, literary editor and author with 22 published books: Seven collections of poetry; three of short fiction; one novel; a critical study of the novel, and, eight joint anthologies on prose, poetry and criticism, and, one joint poetry collection. He is a recipient of the UK-based Destiny Poets’ inaugural Poet of the Year award---2012. His poems were published in the prestigious UN project: Happiness: The Delight-Tree: An Anthology of Contemporary International Poetry, in the year 2015. Sunil edits the English section of the monthly bilingual journal Setu published from Pittsburgh, USA: For more details, please visit the website:

4 thoughts on “An old timer remembers

  1. louiskasatkin

    It is ever the hall mark of the true Poet that their work addresses the vicissitudes afflicting contemporary society. With inimitable compassion, wit and insight the author confronts those socio-economic and cultural manifestations of a world gone wrong and creates a path out of the morass of modernity with his customary poetic aplomb.

  2. Pushmaotee Subrun

    ‘An old timer remembers’ is poignant in describing the loss of the glorious world in all its natural beauty…


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