Though the small streets and the lanes he goes,
His voice echoing around.
He calls aloud, this sharpener of knives:
They hear him, the mothers, the sisters, the wives:
Each busy housewife knows
That he'll set the wheel on the ground:
The sparks will fly as he steps on the pedal:
Sharper and sharper gets the now-shiny metal:
He pockets the small sums that he's paid,
Perhaps drinks a cup of tea that someone's made...
Then he's off again, with his clarion call,
Whoever needs his work...he goes to serve them all.
I heard his "clarion call" (in Chennai, what he calls is, "katthi shAAAAAAAANAAAAA!") and rushed out on to the balcony to photograph his retreating form...my sis in law didn't want any knives sharpened that day!