Thursday, November 24, 2016

A poem by BHISMA UPRETI

THE DOOR
                                               


'What could be behind this door?'
I open every new door
With this curiosity in me.

I reach another turn
Ahead from the one I've left behind,
Walking a road to another road,
Crossing a bridge to another river, and
To another age, too, stepping on
The age I'm in.

No matter how much
One walks, one finds another road ahead
Another turn
Another river
And a new petal of life, every time
One walks, being a new door.

'What could be behind this door?'
Oh! 
How I, only in this question,
Happen to meet myself,
Happen to see myself!

Nothing but my curiosity
Is my living.

*******                                 
(Translation: SHIKHAR GHIMIRE)


In Nepali Version:
-----------------------------

ढोका 

             -- भीष्म उप्रेती 

'यो ढोका भन्दा उता के होला ?'
यही उत्सुकता बोकेर 
खोल्छु म हरेक नयाँ ढोका । 

म पुग्छु एउटा घुम्तीबाट अर्को घुम्ती 
एउटा बाटो हिँडेर अर्को बाटो 
एउटा पुल काटेर अर्को नदी 
र एउटा उमेर टेकेर अर्को उमेर पनि ।

जति हिँडे पनि भेटिन्छ फेरि अर्को बाटो 
अर्को घुम्ती 
अर्को नदी 
र उमेरको पालुवा पनि 
प्रत्तेक पल्ट नयाँ नयाँ ढोका भएर ।

'यो ढोका भन्दा उता के होला ?'
म त केवल यही प्रश्नमा मात्र 
आफूलाई भेट्तोरहेछु 
आफूलाई देख्तोरहेछु । 

मेरो उत्सुकता नै 
मेरो बाँच्नु ।


Thursday, May 19, 2016

A poem by ANIL NEMBANG

ADDRESSING THOSE WHO HAVE ACHIEVED HEIGHTS

 
You talk about the sky
You talk about the moon
And stars
Oh man— you
Who have achieved heights!
Any idea?
The pearls and diamonds
That you have worn on your neck and fingers
To show off your heights
Are found in the depth—

In the depth of earth
And ocean. 

*******
(Translation: HARIS ADHIKARI) 



In Nepali Version:
-----------------------------

उचाइ हासिल गर्नेलाई सम्बोधन

आकाशको कुरा गर्छौ
जून-ताराको कुरा गर्छौ,
उचाइ हासिल गर्ने मान्छे !
थाहा तिमीलाई ?
तिमीले आफ्नो उचाइ झल्काउन
गला औँलामा लगाएका
हिरा-मोतिहरु गहिराइमा नै पाइन्छ

पृथीको समुन्द्रको गहिराइमा

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A poem by Bishwa Sigdel

SOCIOLOGY OF APPLAUSE

                                         
                                             — Bishwa Sigdel 

The continuation
Of hewing an idol on this rock
Was long in practice
When I was still a kid—
Theory of the evolution of organism,
Thousands of shankha-chakra*   
On the hidden-like, stratous rock
Are still clear  
In the densest jungle 
Of my memory!  

The first chisel on the rock
Was that of mother—
An image of the maternal uncle having arrived,
His image in ‘papa lyaye’* 
In that ‘Tarabaji lailai’*—
It was a meaningful clap
Of the delicate hands.
How can mother’s ploys 
Be cruel?
That was the first exposure to claps 
In the tingling sensation on my palms. 

The chisel was a bit blunt
In the second exposure,
A bit faster hammer
Sister taught me
to clap, to sing some
Bright songs of children,
In the welcome of the rising sun,
In which, like the leaves of the wind,
Continually flapped
Sister’s tongues, from which flowed
A powerful attraction
Like the jets of milk spurting out
From mother’s bosom.    

And with time,
When the walls of mother’s womb
Turned into a wider world,
The two delicate palms
Got trapped
In between two cruel system boulders
That were crawling
In the quake of the claps. Then started
The journey of slavery, and was born
The blind era—
Fixing ears in the hands
From the classes of kindergarten!

Along with the alphabets,
Your policy tied up— onto our lips—
The tradition of applause— hard
Like cane; attractive
Like the tune of bhajan* and sangini*; cruel—
The clapping of two hands—
Like the khukuri* sanctified
By the holy spirit of Durga*— is ever ready
To applaud.

Oh! We did transfer
Our rights to the clapping
Of our hands— long before we knew it, in childhood—
Reluctantly, going against ourselves.
Our claps, which go applauding after crowds,
Which continually reverberate 
In the Assembly House
In support of the government,
Which has become your weapon; and we
The unarmed! 

Our claps, better than
The Hare Rama* of a puja,
The rhythms of the soles of feet
At dhan naach*,
And chutka* and chatak*,
Are going louder together
With malls and multiplexes
That are playing the damaru*
By climbing up the shoulders
Of consumers
And the thriving market— something …
Not in our hands
Are our claps!

Blind,
Claps are completely blind;
And here the market
Is snugly sitting
Taking poetry
As just rounds of clapping!  


FOOTNOTES
-----------------------------------

Shankha— the conch-shell-like print/ sign on fingertips (In Hindu mythology, the protector god Vishnu’s conch shell, namely Panchajanya, represents (his) power to create and maintain the universe.)

Chakra— the whorls on fingertips (Lord Vishnu’s chakra, a sharp-spinning discus-like weapon, named Sudarshana, symbolizes the cyclic nature of existence.) 

Tarabaji lailai— one of the lullabies sung in Nepali language

Papa lyaye— Brought sweets

Bhajan— a devotional song, particularly in Hindu culture

Sangini—a kind of Nepali folk tune to which Nepali womenfolk sing and dance on special occasions like Teej or Tihar festivals 

Durga—Goddess Durga in Hindu mythology/ religion is taken as the re-manifestation of the primordial power. She was the one who relieved the mankind and the gods vanquished by the demon Mahishasura by slaying him in a battle that went for ten days, which was very fierce. 

Khukuri— the national weapon of Nepal (To mark the victory of Durga over the demon Mahishasura and to express the joy over it, people sacrifice goats and buffalos either using a khukuri or a sword on the 8th or 9th day of Dashain festival. And before they do so, the weapon has to be worshipped. There is this assumption that goddess Durga’s spirit comes and sanctifies the weapon for the sacrifice. Hence, the sanctified weapon should not be used for other purposes prior to making the sacrifice.)   

Hare Rama— a way of praying to Rama, one of the avatars of Lord Vishnu

Dhan naach— a type of dance which is popular in Rai and Limbu communities in the eastern parts of Nepal. Mainly, this dance is performed, while working in the fields during the times of rice harvesting or in fairs and festivals, by holding one another’s hands. The song which is sung along with this dance is called pallam. Youth take these rare occasions as an opportunity to express their love to their beloved ones.

Chudka— a type of Nepali folk song

Chatak— (a) Magic, black art; (b) a trick

Damaru— The damaru is a small drum with two sides (heads) separated from each other by a thin neck-like structure. It is usually used in public magic shows in the streets to attract the attention of people. (In Hinduism, the Damaru is known as one of the instruments of Lord Shiva which symbolizes the two utterly dissimilar states of existence, hidden and manifest. When the damaru is vibrated, it produces dissimilar sounds which are fused together by resonance to create one sound. The sound thus produced symbolizes Nada, the cosmic sound of AUM, which can be heard during deep meditation. According to Hindu scriptures, Nada is the source of creation.)  

*******

(Translation: HARIS ADHIKARI) 


तालीको समाजशास्त्र

                                — विश्व सिग्देल

जब बालकै थिएँ
यो ढुङ्गामा मूर्ति कप्ने सिलसिला
सुरू भैसकेको थियो
लुकेजस्तो पत्रे चट्टानमा
जीव विकासको सिद्धान्त
हजारौँ शङ्ख चक्र
यद्यपि स्पष्ट छन्
स्मृतिको आटप्पे जङ्गलमा !

पहिलो छिना ढुङ्गामा आमाको थियो
ताराबाजी लैलैसँगै मामा आएको तस्वीर
पापा ल्याएको तस्वीर
थियो त्यो सार्थक थपडी कलिला हातहरूको
कसरी हुन सक्छन् निर्मम 
आमाका ज्यावलहरू ?
त्यो थियो
हत्केलाको रम्र्रममा तालीको प्रथम परिचय !

दोस्रो परिचयमा
छिना केही बोधो थियो
केही तेज हथौडा
सिकाइन् दिदीले बजाउन ताली
उदाउँदो सूर्यको स्वागतमा
केही उज्याला बालगीत
जहाँ निरन्तर फर्फराउँथे
हावाका पातजस्तै दिदीका जिब्रा
जसबाट बगेको पाउँथेँ
आमाका छातीबाट बग्ने
दुधका धाराजस्तै
बलशाली आकर्षण !

उमेरसँगै,
आमाको गर्भको चौघेरो
जब भयो फराकिलो संसार
तालीको भैँचालो घस्रेका
दुई कठोर पद्धति पत्थरबीच
च्यापिए दुई कोमल हत्केला
सुरू भो दासत्व यात्रा
जन्मियो अन्धो युग
कान जडेर हातमा
शिशु कक्षाबाट !

कखरासँगै तिम्रा नीतिले
हाम्रा ओठमा बेतजस्तै चाम्रा
भजन सँगिनीका रागजस्तै आकर्षक
दुई हातको मार
दुर्गा चढेको खुकुरी समान
तालीको थिति गाँसिदिए
जो हर्दम
तम्तैयार रहन्छन् बज्न

हामीले ,
हाम्रो हातको ताली
नजान्दै बालखैमा नामसारी गरिदिएछौँ
नमान्दा नमान्दै मनले
जो भीडको पछिपछि बजिहिँड्छ
जो सत्ताको समर्थनमा
निरन्तर घन्किरहन्छ सदनमा
जो बनेको तिम्रो हतियार
निहत्था हामी !

पूजाको हरेराम,
धाननाचको पैतालाको ताल
चुड्काको चटकभन्दा उत्तरोत्तर
झाँगिएको बजार उपभोक्ताको काँध चढी
मल मल्टिकम्प्लेक्स
बजाइरहेछन् डमरु
सँगसँगै बजिरहेछन्
हाम्रा हातमा नभएका
तर हाम्रा ताली !

अन्धो,
बिल्कुलै अन्धो हुन्छ ताली
कवितालाई बजेको ताली गन्दै
बसिरहेछ बजार !

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

A poem by Mishra Baijayanti

ANAMIKA'S PROCLAMATION


                                           — Mishra Baijayanti

I shouldn't have left the village,
I shouldn't have crossed either
the village river—

Shouldn't have put the spade down

from my shoulders, shouldn't have
taken the namlo* away from my scalp;
these soles of mine
are for going round and round
like tethered bullocks at a threshing,
these hands
are not for modern skills,
these eyes
not for seeking our
ways to the future.
Oh lords! Come, take me
to the broad square of your city
and put me in chains there!
Let all the people see and realize
that it's forbidden for birds to flutter
their wings.

It's my fault
to have a stomach from birth
it's my fault
to be born with
parts to be covered ...
fed up
the people might have become
seeing me in their auspicious moments,
defamed
your city might have become
all because of my ragged clothes,
dirtied
your city must have been
by my poor, desolate face ...
I don't know where in this city
is a fountain of water
where I can quench my thirst,
I don't know where humanity,
humans' shelter, is!

It might be here! People having
faces upon faces! People who
have lost their faces ...
It might be here where here are the people!
And the long lost faces ...
All of these ... always divided
by their own existence,
all of these ... always burning
in their own fire,
and changing into cinders
out of their malicious drives ...
O postmodernist KINGS!
Hang me up
from the highest tower
and stone me to death!
Let the earth and its power
quake long and terrible;
not again
may people be found
in hungry faces!

So deep is my wound,
I might have uttered so;
I might have uttered
that a huge pit of sorrow
I have; Your Jazz
might have been starkly contrasted
by my baby's cries. But listen!
Not even a surname
I have,
nor the citizenship card—
only mother
I have,
and father
is what I don't have.

Mother does not have that footing
to provide me with father,
Come, oh lords!
Stand in my place!
Secretly, impregnate me
and be born
on your own from my womb
and plead with yourself
for that identity card!


Namlo*-- a band put round scalp/head to support a load being carried on the back

*******


(Translation: HARIS ADHIKARI)




अनामिकाको ऐलान

                                         — मिश्र वैजयन्ती

मैले गाउँ छोड्न हुँदैनथ्यो
मैले गाउँको नदी तर्नै हुँदैनथ्यो

हुँदैनथ्यो काँधको कोदालो ओराल्न
थाप्लोको नाम्लो उतार्न
यी पाइताला दाइँजस्तै वरिपरी हिँड्नलाई हुन्
हातहरू उन्नत सीपका लागि होइनन्
होइनन् यी आँखाहरू भविष्यका बाटाहरू खोज्न
ओ शासकहरू हो
सहरको सबभन्दा खुला ठाउँमा ठिँगुरा ठोक मलाई
सम्पूर्ण मानिसहरूले देखून् र चाल पाऊन्
सहरमा चराहरूले फटफटाउन निषेध छ ।

जन्मदै एउटा पेट हुनु मेरो भुल हो
भुल हो छोप्नुपर्ने अङ्गहरू लिएर जन्मनु
आजित होलान् मानिसहरू आफ्नो साइतमा मलाई देखेर
बद्नाम भएको होला तिम्रो सहर मेरो मैला कपडाले
फोहोर भएको होला तिम्रो सहर मेरो मैला अनुहारले
मलाई थाहा छैन यो सहरमा कहाँ छ प्यास मेट्ने पानीको धारा
कहाँ छ मानवता, मानिसको सहारा !

यहीँ होलान् अनुहारमाथि अनुहार भएका मानिसहरू
यहीँ होलान् अनुहार हराएका मानिसहरू
यहीँ होलान् मानिसहरू हराएका अनुहारहरू
यी सधैँ आफ्नै अस्तित्वले विभक्त छन्
यी सधैँ आफ्नै आगोले डड्दै छन्
र ईष्र्याले खरानी हुँदै छन् ।
ओ उत्तरआधुनिक महाराजहरू हो
सबभन्दा अग्लो टावरमा झुण्ड्याएर तारो हान मलाई
काँपोस् जमिन र यसको शक्ति
फेरिदेखि सहरमा नभेटियोस् भोको अनुहारमा मानिस ।

धेरै गहिरो छ घाउ मसँग भनेँ हुँला
भनेँ हुँला मनमा दुःखको खाडल छ
तिम्रो ज्याज मेरो शिशुको रुवाईले बद्नाम भयो होला
न मेरो जात छ
न छ देशको नागरिकता
मसँग केवल आमा छ बाबु छैन ।
आमासँग मलाई बाबु दिलाउने आधार छैन
मेरो गोडामा तिमी उभिन
ओ शासकहरू हो आऊ मलाई गोप्य गर्भाधान गर
आफैँ जन्म मेरो कोखबाट
र आफैँ माग नागरिकता आफैँसँग ।