Bananas

He crouched
in the crowded Metro carriage
reciting the Lord’s prayer
in his own language

‘Hallowed be thy name . . .’

in all the dust, bustle and noise —
followed by the suggested reward,
small dirty hand outstretched
from the seven year old body,

‘Give us our daily bread. . . .’

Our eyes met briefly,
I had no small change or bread
so he left for greener pastures

until I remembered the bananas
in the shopping bag
and offered a yellow fruit

delighting the dark brown eyes
scurried
to afar corner
like a small squirrel.

The banana was a mystery,
biting the top hesitantly
with no knowledge of peeling

and then still puzzled the train stopped
hurried to the next carriage to chant

‘Thy will be done on earth
as it is in Heaven . . .’

once more to busy passengers,
whose hearts were already fixed
on the comforts of home.

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