Summer Ballot

The queue was full of flower-heads,
Who wore their choices on their sleeves.
Of course, the party’s not at fault.
These mango men need handkerchieves.

“You cannot wear this,” someone said.
“It’s not allowed,” said someone else.
The polling officers, instead,
Refused to say a word themselves.

The flower-heads went one by one
And beeped the symbols that they wore.
They praised the Prime Minister’s work
And prayed he gets to serve some more.

My mother eyed an officer,
Who used to be her student once.
He shook his head and tapped his belt.
I told her they are carrying guns.

My mother eyed the constable,
Who used to be her father’s aide.
He shook his head and tapped his chest.
She understood they had been paid.

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