Feeling the steel bridge’s dampened spring underfoot.
Built for a handful of pedestrians,
but currently saddled with 60 —
along with six scooters,
one 125cc motorcycle
and a cow.
The cow is the most capable of insisting that a path
be cleared, and of clearing it.
Yet, in this city of sadhus,
it’s the only one not trying to crawl up anyone’s back.
Though it’s far more intimidating than the sickly, hoarse horn of the motorcycle —
drawn out in the way of terminally ill batteries.
The cow steps when a void opens and stands stoically when there is none.
Time seems to be a different experience for it than for its fellow travelers.
The bovine’s simple cortex knows one rule:
“If you can’t get where you’re going,
the only win is found in being satisfied where you are.”
And now I pray,
“Lord, grant me the patience of a Rishikesh cow.”