A sleeper coach….both Bengal-bound;

Side berths that faced each other;

It was a solo trip for me,

And you were with your mother.


Our likes turned out to be the same:

The rich Masala Tea,

And when there were no chaiwallahs,

We’d opt for Jhal Moori.


While passing through the vestibule,

I saw you standing there

Against the door; the summer breeze

Was fanning your soft hair.


No dialogues…….and though my mind

Remained upon a book,

It watched out for small pleasantries 

So we could share a look.


Night came. I helped you place the berth,

The pillow and the sheet;

While climbing, your small jhumka fell

Beside my shaky feet.


I picked it up; reached out to you;

Placed it on your cupped fingers;

You smiled at me, our young hands touched—

A moment which still lingers.




Bengal: a province/state in India.

Masala Tea: a tea prepared containing a blend of various spices.

Chaiwallahs: tea sellers.

Jhal Moori: an Indian snack.

Jhumka: an earring.


Shamik Banerjee is a poet and poetry reviewer from the North-Eastern belt of India. He loves taking long strolls and spending time with his family. His deep affection with Solitude and Poetry provides him happiness.