Mango Bites

Watching Sans Sleep!

జూలై 2015

I have been watching since then
For that traveller who walked away thus
with blood stained feet
through those streets where
vermillion was dried.

I have been watching
The shadows of darkness on the front yards,
The celebrations of the nude scenes
Under the pandals of eyes,
The streams that ran from the valleys and
The separated footsteps on the sand dunes.

I have been watching for
That traveler who went as a procession
leading splendrous thousand groups!
I remember his foot prints
That faltered in the forest of footsteps
amidst the jubilation of streets.

I remember the tone of his voice
In the rustling musical rain of dry leaves.

I remember his handshake
In the electric gardens of blossomed plastic flowers.
I remember his affectionate address
In the narrow rooms of hearts with broken doors
I still remember the rays of his smiles
That landed on the drooped window wings

Every morning is a kind of death here.
Life throws the swords of moments
And leaves (one) severed.
The sunshine comes like the white cloth
From the shore of mirages.
Then we paint the old letters
With beautiful colours
We peel the words off the lips
We create deserts on the throat
And bloom darkness on the eyes
We build tombs of stone on the body
And capture the flowing time in the old records
By tying down the hand of present time in the clock.
I keep on watching
The flags will fly like pigeons into the sky
From the rotten hands
Preparations for the
Funeral procession of common man
Will be made on the worlds of huge buildings
They will worship humans
As statues on the breasts of open streets
They will trap for power
From the ladder of innocence
Sprinkling seeds of false promises
The larynx breaks off to pieces
Under the footsteps
Of the lame wooden horse
I keep on watching
Those tender little hands that hid the tomorrow
Will be withered
This brat will not even have
The dried blood from the desert breasts
The iris of the ninth month is broken
Friend! ( C o m r a d e!)
This country is deceived
This morning is not yours
This flag you have been
Carrying on your shoulders is not yours
I am beating the morning drum again
And stamping the sound on the sleeping earth
I am that fragrant scene on the lush green fields
Blooming through the setting sun’s ray
I am that naked mountain
Running from the shy veils of dusk
To the shore of moonlight
I am that morning sunshine
landed on the earth
That glided into the depths of deep slumber.

Original: ‘Jagaaram’ by Afsar (Telugu)
Translated by: Dr.K.Vijaya Babu

4 Responses to Watching Sans Sleep!

  1. July 1, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    పెదాల మీద మాటల్ని ఒలిచేస్తాం.. కళ్ల మీద చీకట్లని పుష్పిస్తాం … great expressions

  2. varalakshmi
    July 2, 2015 at 5:18 pm

    The force and desperation ,the soul of the original ,has been nicely captured and voiced in this translation. A very good attempt indeed!

  3. Sobha K.Rao
    July 3, 2015 at 11:27 am

    Great job Dr.Vijaya Babu ji. The translator has to enter the soul of the original poet. You have succeeded in catching the original spirit of the poet. It makes an interesting reading.Congrats and I wish you a great future!

  4. Dr. Kedari Narasimha Rao
    July 28, 2015 at 3:41 pm

    Sir! A natural flow of expression. Translation cannot be a myth. It’s a treasure trove of desperation and agonizing song of the soul.

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