Hunger reactions

Hunger reactions
The security guard
Squat, solid
Fresh from Assam,
Doing a 12-hour security job
For the big insurance company,
Takes a quick breakfast
By dipping bread loaves
In tap water collected in a chipped glass;
Noticed by the peon,
Cross-eyed, thin and bald,
He is sent to the company’s large canteen
Where the young guard
In baggy trousers and loose shirt,
Looking like a toy,
In a colourful static shop,
Is given tea and hot samosas
By a young and caring waiter from Andhra Pradesh,
When the lolling owner,
A big fat man,
Shouts at
This act of generosity,
The silent waiter says
Charge this to my meager accounts,
As I cannot see a fellow- being
Go semi-starved
And eat his bread with tap water.
The old owner smiles,
Sitting on a leather chair
Under the
Oversized painting
Of his favourite deity,
And all,
And declares blandly:
As you wish,
You won’t ever change,
Nor will understand,
The city mores,
You great rustic fool!

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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:

3 thoughts on “Hunger reactions

  1. Louis Kasatkin

    “Hunger reactions” immerses the reader in the world as it is.Sunil’s themes and concerns are exactly those which have echoed and continue to echo down the corridors of Human history.The very same themes and concerns expressed with similar intensities of compassion by novels such as “Hard Times” and “The Ragged Trouser Philanthropists” and music as relevant and immediate as Springsteen’s soundtrack album to the global capitalist financial crisis,”Wrecking Ball”.

    1. Sunil Sharma

      Louis Kastatkin—as sharp as the Ninja’s silent sword; as focused as a Grand Prix driver; as observant as a literary Sherlock Homes.
      Thanks, Louis—for such warm-hearted readings of all the poems on this supportive poetry site.

  2. Louis Kasatkin

    This poem comprises one of the twelve chosen for inclusion in , ” PICK OF THE POEMS ” an Editorial selection of the best poems posted during July 1 – September 30 here at Destiny Poets. Our Facebook page carried the original announcement on Friday,30 November.” PICK OF THE POEMS ” is an Editorial Selection of poems posted in each Quarterly period throughout the year at The selection is tabulated in alphabetical order and PART 3 are choices made from the Calendar period July 1st.-September 30th. This notification is also posted and can be viewed under HEAR HEAR at * A Silly poem – Madhumita Ghosh….* Childhood – Fathima Manal….* Emily Dickinson’s lost Dog – Reena Prasad….* Hunger Reactions – Sunil Sharma….* I never walk alone – Kusum Vig….* Infinity – Gina McKnight….* It Falls – Keith Wallis….* Languishing – Stephanie Doty….* Mental Bullying – Aparna Pathak….* Swaying of thoughts – Diwakar Pokhriyal….* What’s united about our kingdom ? ” – Phil Martin….* Wish I could have been there – Jan Phillips.


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