Beach evenings
by Sunil Sharma

In the solitary corner
Obscured by the palms
We would sit together
After a long swim
The water sliding off
Brown bodies taut
Warmed by the Mumbai sun
And then watch the waves crash
On the shore walked by hundreds
Of feet — bare or shod
Feeling the wet sand and the surf
In that mega city with millions of

Sundays were special
As we would journey down
To the beaches
And monsoons added their
Peculiar charm and magic
To the public places frequented
By the middle class for a bit of
Air and sea.
Drinking chai
Eating peanuts
Getting drenched
By the rains
And then —
Seeing mermaids
Leaping out of the foam
Of the hissing ocean.

PHOTO: Beach, Mumbai, India.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This poem captures the middle-class moment of sharing the beach and becoming a part of a surging community on holidays. The desire to escape the vertical costly cages and escape to the outdoors is common in a crowded city like Mumbai. There, in driving rains, if you could glimpse a mermaid, then the urban adventure would be complete for the kids and believing adults in that concrete jungle.


Based in Mumbai, India, Sunil Sharma is a widely published Indian writerHe has published 14 books: four collections of poetry, two of short fiction, one novel, one a critical study of the novel and co-edited six anthologies on prose, poetry, and criticism. He is a recipient of the UK-based Destiny Poets’ inaugural Poet of the Year award — 2012. Recently his poems were published in the UN project, Happiness: The Delight-Tree.