అనువాదలహరి

The Lost Case… Sriraj Ginne, Telugu, Indian

Sriraj Ginne

(Born: November 22, 1946)

********

 

“A lawyer shouldn’t discriminate between one case and the other. Doing justice to one’s clients is true dispensation of justice,” is what lawyer Sundara Ramayya always told his colleagues.

Everybody knew that only Sundara Ramayya had the knack of distancing ‘in’ from ‘justice’ jumbling with words and provisions of law to win cases for his clients. He argued every case with a blend of professional skill and artistic finesse to gain the winning edge. Anybody who had entered the Court premises anytime during the last fifteen years must have known that!

Not a single case he had taken up so far was lost. None of his clients was ever convicted. He never refused a case nor turned away his client.

He argued impetuously the love affairs of minor college girls; got many couple divorced; helped drunkards evade conviction; saved prostitutes from penalties and imprisonment. In one word, he took up every kind of case and won every one of them hands down! Of course, he collected fabulous amount as fee.

The Public Prosecutors quivered when they were to argue against his defence. He could even flummox the judges with his arguments. Many a criminal escaped the noose. Many an innocent was awarded rigorous imprisonment.

Sundara Ramayya was notorious for his sharp tongue. ‘your mother must have given some special brew in your childhood; otherwise, how could you argue with such ease?’ his friends used to compliment him bitterly.

‘Lord Brahma must have put his tongue one point up. That’s why he’s able to win any case so effortlessly,’ his senior colleagues at the bar used to say grudgingly.

‘He must have had the good omen of a beautiful dame coming in front on the very first day of his practice. He is still riding that Dame Luck to this day! That’s why he wins every damned case in a trice,’ the young crop of advocates thought, with a touch of envy.

Sundara Ramayya just laughed away all their remarks.

In the last fifteen years, he took up thousands of cases, collected lakhs od rupees in fees, constructed a palatial bungalow, bought an Impala, bought as much wet land as permissible by law and registered in his name and opened accounts in many prestigious banks.

You could sum-up his character thus:

He had ambitions with sky as the limit!

He had ideas as expansive as a desert!

He was all love for his queenly wife!

And, he had ‘polished popularity’ in the society.

*

One fine morning…

When the dew drops on the roses were melting away,

When the leaves of grass were smiling happily in the lawn,

Sundara Ramayya was looking at himself in the mirror tying his bow.

His wife, Lakshmi, was standing behind with a cup of coffee in one hand and a black coat in the other.

“So, what man! You say that we should go to Leela Mahal this evening!” he asked his wife, looking mischievously into her face in the mirror.

She was a fan of Richard Burton. He had been teasing her with promise to take her to “Where Eagles Dare”.

“Forget it! You shouldn’t be believed. You never stand on your word,” she said in mock annoyance.

Courts… Clients… and Cases!!! How could he find time?

“You are mistaken dear! Ask any of my clients how powerful my word is!” he said receiving the cup out of her hand.

He wins cases in courts with his arguments.

But wins the heart of his wife humoring her with his words!

“Lakshmi! Do you know how beautiful you look?… like a string of white clouds… a smooth rose… a glistening water drop! I don’t feel like looking at those palling faces on the silver screen after looking at this divine beauty!”

She was over thirty-five. But she blushed like a chrysanthemum knowing the import of his words.

“Sir! Someone has come for you,” announced his servant.

Sundara Ramayya put on his black coat and walked into the hall. The two visitors waiting in the hall stood up and greeted him. One of them was old.  The second one was on the first rung of his chewing-gum-like youth.  Looking at his chequered lungi, the red vest and the black belt round his waist and the sabre-sharp moustache, Sundara Ramayya smelt a first-rate villain in him.

“Picked a pocket, is it?” he asked the chequered lungi.

“No Sir!” His voice has the grating sound of an overused gramophone record.

“Severed a head, then?”

The chequered lungi  bent his head down silently. The older man demurred.

“remember! Never hide the disease from the doctor  and truth from the lawyer! If you do, you are out, and your case is lost! Come on… tell me the truth!”

“This is Simhadri… my som. I got him out… on bail. We belong to Yendada village…” the old man was speaking in broken words.

“Come to the point.”

“Rattalu runs  a country liquor shop in our village.  The boy fell in love with her daughter Varalu. But the girl did not like him. This fellow is short tempered. He asked her why she could not love him.  She replied in a very derogatory manner.  In a fit of anger he stabbed her. It’s all that had happened sir!”

“Very good! So it is a case of spirited love, then!”

Sundara Ramayya was not new to such cases. That is why it did not surprise him. For him, winning a murder case is as easy as burning a nylon thread with matchstick.

“Hmm! What is your name?” he asked the old man.

“Gangulu, Sir!”

“Listen, Gangulu! Was there any eyewitness when your son stabbed Varahalu?”

“Her mother Rattalu was there itself, sir!” Gangulu thought  it wise to place all the facts before the lawyer who gave such an assurance.

Sundara Ramayya spent thoughtfully five minutes of his invaluable time.

“Does Rattalu have any kith and kin, Gangulu?”

“No, Sir! She had only that Varalu… that too not her own… she adopted her.”

The eyebrows of Sundara Ramayya unknotted immediately.

“Gangulu, don’t worry about the boy.  We will win the case. Give all other details to my clerk… see me later,” he said stepping out.

“You are our only hope, sir! Only you can save his life.  But for his short temper, he is very innocent, sir! Take whatever fee you want, but we should win the case. He should not be convicted.” Gangulu wrung his hands in obedience. Simhadri was staring at him.  Sundara Ramayya  shot back a smile at them and got into his grey Impala.

*

Yendada is a small village about seven kilometers from the nearby town. Still, Rattalu and her country liquor shop were very famous. In fact, people believed that the success of her business  and her popularity were solely due to her daughter Varahalu. Her business picked up only after Varahalu started managing the affairs of the shop.

It is very difficult to describe her beauty.  She is whiter than the white cirrus clouds, smother than the smoothest rose, and brighter than the brightest dew drop.

Varahalu laughed seductively. Intoxicated by that, people took more and more draught. In their drinking spree, they paid all that they had on them. In a short span of time, Rattalu became one of the “Haves” of the village.

One day, Simhadri saw the aurelian hand of Varahalu as she was serving him arrack.  He looked up.  Varahalu smiled at him like a spotless full moon. His inane heart softened to a wick of wax.

“Isn’t she the daughter of aunt Rattalu? Isn’t she Varalu?”   he asked himself within.

Unable to endure anymore delay, he started loving her instantly.

“Rattalu! You are earning so much.  Why don’t you have a building of your own?” customer used to ask her every day.

“This hut brought us luck.  Why do I need another building? When Varahalu gets married, I shall construct a big building  and keep her and her husband there,” was her usual reply.

Combing his moustache and looking covetously at Varahalu, Simhadri sitting nearby used to say, “when I am here why need you to look for somebody else for Varahalu?”

Varahalu used to get furious at such remarks.

“Simhadri! You are no match for my child. She doesn’t like you in the first place.” Rattalu used to snub him.

He was unable to suffer the indignity and the insult.

Simhadri used all possible tricks at his command in his dull head to win over Varahalu. The more he tried, the more she despised him.  He wanted her at any cost and by any means. One such essay brought about Varahalu’s death and lodged Simhadri temporarily in jail.

That was summer evening. It was past eight.  Varahalu counted the collections for the day, gave money to Rattalu and sent her to town for replenishment of stocks. When Varahalu was changing into fresh clothes after a bath, Simhadri entered her room and closed it behind him.

Covering herself fully with her sari, she howled at him in uncontrollable fit of anger, “You!… will you get out of this room immediately or not?”

“Varalu! It’s me, Simhadri. Tell me why don’t you like me? Don’t I have money? Lands? Am I not handsome? Why don’t you marry me?” He was pleading and advancing towards her simultaneously.

“Ah! A handsome figure!” she sneered, “look at that face! A black polecat! Don’t you ever dream of marrying me! First get out of here!” she did not conceal her abhorrence.

Simhadri’s anger scorched him like acid. The beast in him was thoroughly aroused. With enraged eyes, he advanced towards her menacingly. Her heckling added fuel to his already volatile anger. His inebriated body leaped over her.

Varahalu deftly slipped away hissing like a she-cobra.  Commanding all the strength at her disposal, she bit him on his gullet. At that very moment a dagger pierced through her heart. Rattalu who entered the house at that very moment shrieked hysterically  in fear and anguish and fell over her daughter’s body.

Life left Varahalu’s body with rocket speed. Simhadri bolted from the scene.

*

God had only ten incarnations.  But the money created by man has infinite incarnations to date; and would assume as many in future. It lifts the “Haves” further up in the society and crushes the “Have nots” further down.

Gangulu’s money transformed itself into justice. It reached Sundara Ramayya wallet, stirred many brilliant  and fertile ideas in him, and prompted to rack his brain day and night with reference books on law. And, to his own amazement Sundara Ramayya argued the case as he had never done before!

Simhadri was innocent. It was only Rattalu who committed the murder. Varahalu was not her own daughter but an adopted one.  Rattalu proposed  Simhadri to Varahalu  and she flatly refused. There were heated exchanges and in a fit of anger unable to stand Varahalu’s refusal on one side and the love she bore for Simhadri on the other, Rattalu killed her… was Sundara Ramayya’s  line of argument.

His arguments were so foolproof  that even the Public Prosecutor was not able to counter. The judge asked Rattalu if she had anything to say in this matter.

“What have I to say, Sir? Justice or no justice, my daughter  can’t be brought back to life. Then, why should I be living? I cannot live without her. Please award the maximum punishment to me. Please hang me, I pray! I plead guilty. Please hang me!” Rattalu wept.

She did not say a word more. She did not  answer the questions put forward by the judge or the Public Prosecutor. In the withered old frame of Rattalu, there was no desire to live. Neither there was any vengeance against those who perpetrated the crime on her daughter. Nor there was any anguish that a crime she had never committed was slapped on her.

She thanked Sundara Ramayya with folded hands for giving a direction to her meaningless life.

The judge awarded her life term.

The police took her to jail.

Simhadri was acquitted. There was a glow of success in Sundara Ramayya’s eyes. Simhadri ran after Sundara Ramayya’s car up to Ganjipet junction. His ocean of happiness was on a high tide.

*

Sundara Ramayya was reading newspaper sitting in the hall. He looked up to Simhadri and asked, “What is the matter?”

“Nothing in particular, sir! I just wanted to give you a small present,” Simhadri demurred.

“What’s that?” Sundara Ramayya  asked curiously, putting the newspaper aside.

“Sir! You have saved my life. Had it been anybody else, it would have been gallows for me. Sir! Please keep this chain,” he took out a gold chain from his pocket.

Sundara Ramayya looked at the chain. He suddenly turned pale.

“Simhadri!… this locket…” he minced words.

“Belonged to that dead Varalu, sir!”

“You mean…!”

“I snatched it while running away.  She used to parade with this chain.  It is with this locket they say Rattalu found that winch near Seetamadhara, Sir!”

“Get out! Get out!” He wanted to roar at Simhadri,  but the words failed him. His face lost its color.

Simhadri kept the locket on the table and left.

Calendar pages reeled back swiftly in Sundara Ramayya memory quickly. Fourteen years!

That was last week of November . He and his wife Lakshmi went out for picnic with their only daughter and few neighbours to Seetamadhara. With the Bay of Bengal in the distance and Yarada hill in the neighborhood, the city was looking like a woman at an advanced stage of pregnancy. Everything looked pleasant, he took many photos, and they all walked up the hill racing, reached the picnic spot and lost completely absorbed in conversation. It was only later that they noticed the baby missing. Lakshmi shrieked in fear. He shuddered to think. They searched the entire area.  In a garden where about three thousand people were picnicking. A three-year baby went missing … never to be seen by the parents again!

“Baby!” he cried in anguish as his eyes rained tears. Image of the three-year-old baby was hammering the ‘man’ within him. He wept his heart out. Humaneness, love and all fine sentiments engulfed him from all corners and started heckling him.

Whom did he help to win?

Whom did he get convicted?

His head fell, like one from a noose.

He never entered the premises of a court room again!

***

Telugu Original:  Last Case Sriraj Ginne

Translators: RS Krishna Moorthy & NS Murty

From : The Palette, March 1997

(The translators changed the ‘Last’ in title to ‘Lost’ keeping the story in mind)

  

Untiring Faith  … Ravii Verelly, Telugu, Indian

That the Sky

Is my close pal, no doubt;

But I amn’t sure

If he would

Give me way … parting.

That the Sun

Is my master who taught me

To be pragmatic, for sure;

But, there is no assurance

That he would travel with me

Unto the last.

Yet,

Like the deciduous leaf

To keep its promise to the Fall,

One can drop down dead

Anytime

With untiring faith on the Earth.

.

Ravi Verelly

Telugu, Indian

భరోసా 

.

ఆకాశం

నాకు ఆప్తమిత్రుడే కావొచ్చు

అయినా

పగిలి దారిస్తాడన్న

నమ్మకం లేదు.

సూర్యుడు

నాకు బ్రతుకునేర్పిన గురువే కావొచ్చు

అయినా

ఎప్పటికీ తోడుంటాడన్న

భరోసా లేదు.

కానీ

శిశిరానికిచ్చిన  మాటకోసం

చెట్టు చెయ్యిని విడిచిన ఆకులా,

భూమ్మిదున్న భరోసాతో

ఎప్పుడైనా

నిర్భయంగా నేలరాలొచ్చు.

.

రవి వీరెల్లి

తెలుగు, భారతీయ కవి

Gravity… Ravi Verelly, Telugu, Indian Poet

The drop of water

That silently dissolves into earth

After planting a kiss on its forehead,

Shall well up as spring someday.

A leaf

that vises the melting seasons

Rising its head from a mother branch

Shall rustle animated only after its fall.

A flower, cynosure of all eyes

Meditating on its stalk,

Surrenders to a gentle draft

To prostrate before the feet of soil.

The Moon, who plants stars galore

Ploughing the vast firmament,

Caresses the crests of tides

For springs of rain to water them.

Shuttling between ideation and words

Eyes flaring with dreamy desires,

Like … the drop,

The leaf,

The flower, and

The moonlight over the tide

I long to embrace you.

.

Ravi Verelly

Telugu

Indian Poet

(From  Kundapana)

 

Ravi Verelly

గ్రావిటీ

 

భూమి నుదుట తడిముద్దు పెట్టి

గుట్టుచప్పుడుకాకుండా ఇంకిన చినుకు

ఏదో ఒకరోజు ఊటనీరై ఉవ్వెత్తున ఉబుకుతుంది

 

తల్లికొమ్మలోంచి తల పైకెత్తి

కరుగుతున్న కాలాలన్నిటినీ ఒడిసిపట్టిన ఆకు

నేల రాలేకే గలగలా మాట్లాడుతుంది.

 

తొడిమెపై తపస్సుచేసి

లోకాన్ని తనచుట్టూ తిప్పుకున్న పువ్వు

మట్టిపాదాలు తాకడానికి

గాలివాటానికో లొంగిపోతుంది.

 

అనంతమైన ఆకాశాన్ని సాగుచేసి

చుక్కల మొక్కలు నాటిన చంద్రుడు

చిన్న నీటిబిందువు కోసం కిందికి చేతుకు సాచి

అలల తలను దువ్వుతాడు

 

ఎప్పుడూ కళ్ళనిండా కలల వత్తులేసుకుని

ఆలోచనకీ అక్షరానికీ మధ్య తచ్చాడే నాకు

ఆకులా

పువ్వులా

చినుకులా

అలను తాకే వెన్నెలలా

 

నిన్నుహత్తుకోవడమే ఇష్టం.

.

రవి వీరెల్లి

తెలుగు కవి

(“కుందాపన” నుండి)

గుప్పెడు మట్టి… హెన్రీ లూయీ వివియన్ డెరోజియో, భారతీయ (బెంగాలీ) కవి

అప్పటికి ఆకాశం లేతనీలిరంగు సంతరించుకుంది

గగన మండలం మీదకి సూర్యుడు ఇంకా అడుగుపెట్టలేదు.

చిటారుకొమ్మమీద కోయిల గొంతెత్తి ప్రభాతగీతమాలపిస్తోంది,

చిక్కని ఆకుపచ్చని ప్రకృతి సువాసనలతో గుబాళిస్తోంది.

జూలియన్, నేనూ అలా నడుచుకుంటూ నడుచుకుంటూ

ఈ నేల గర్వించే గొప్ప వ్యక్తి సమాధి దగ్గర ఆగేము.

శిలాఫలకం అతని పేరూ, వయసూ, ఘనతా ప్రకటిస్తోంది.

అతను సాధించిన ఘనకార్యాలకీ, అతనిమీద కురిపించిన

ప్రశంసల జల్లుకీ నాకు నోటమాట రాలేదు, నాకు తెలియకుండానే

అతని సాధనకీ, జీవిత విస్తృతికీ నాలో అసూయ పొడచూపింది:

ఎవరో గొప్పవ్యక్తి మాటలే, ‘మనిషొక మహత్తర సృష్టి ‘

అనీ నేనూ చిలకపలుకు పలికేను; జూలియన్ వొంగి

అక్కడనుండి కొంత మట్టిని తనచేతిలోకి తీసుకుని

ఇలా అన్నాడు, “చూడు! మనిషంటే మరేమీ కాదు, ఇది!”

.

హెన్రీ లూయీ వివియన్ డెరోజియో

(12th Aug 1809- 26th Dec 1831)

భారతీయ (బెంగాలీ) కవి

.

Dust

.

Of soft cerulean colour was the sky,

The sun had not yet risen o’er the scene,

The wild lark sang his morning hymn on high,

And heaven breathed sweetly o’er the foliage green

Julian and I walked forth, and soon we came

Unto the tomb of a high son of fame ;

The marble told his deeds, his years, and name.

Struck with his greatness, and the sounding praise

That was bestowed upon him, I began

Almost to envy him the race he ran:

Man is a noble work, the wise man says,

And so said I ; but Julian stooped, and took

Some dust up in his hand, and bade me look

Upon it well, and then he cried, ‘See, this is man !’

April, 1827

.

Henry Louis Vivian Derozio

(10 th Apr 1809*-  26th Dec 1831) 

Indo-Anglian Poet, 

The DOB has been corrected vide reference to Prof KR Srinivasa Iyyengar’s book (https://archive.org/details/indiancontributi030041mbp/page/n38) Page 9.
Some of the other references state it as 18th Apr 1809.

An Unburnt Clay Pot… Sikhamani, Telugu Poet, Indian

Some unknown person

I met on my way

Put a Pot of clay

In my hands, and left

Asking me to take care of it.

 

From that day

I have been carrying it with me

Without rest or relent.

And over time

I got used to

Carrying it unaware i did.  

 

Having carried it for years

I lost sense of it

As it has become part of me. 

 

It was such a encumbrance that

I was never aware of its burden

Or ever felt any tiresomeness.

The funniest part, of course,

Is, no matter how long I carried it

Or, how far I had carried it

I never felt the desire

To take a peep into its contents.

 

Pity. 

Been damp for long

Rolling in blood and tears,

With Sweat and semen

At last

One day

It collapsed in my hands.

 

Then, I was compelled to look into it. 

 

To my surprise

What I found

Hiding this long under

The ivy gourd of my body   

Were my own bony remains.

.

Sikhamani

Telugu Poet, Indian

.

.

పచ్చికుండ

.

ఎవరో అపరిచితుడు

ఎదురుపడి

ఒక మృణ్మయ పాత్రను

చేతుల్లోపెట్టి

జాగ్రత్త చెప్పిమరీ వెళ్ళిపోయాడు.

అప్పట్నుండీ

అవిశ్రాంతంగా

దానిని మోసుకు తిరుగుతూనే వున్నాను

చివరికి

దానిని మోయడం

ఒక వ్యసనమైపోయింది.

మోయగా మోయగా

కొంతకాలానికి

అది నాలో భాగమైపోయింది

ఒకటే మో

బరువుతెలియని మోత

అలసట ఎరుగని మోత

ఎంతకాలం మోసినా

ఎంతదూరం మోసినా

అందులో ఏముందో

చూడాలనిపించకపోవడం విచిత్రం.

రక్తమూ, కన్నీళ్ళూ

చెమటా వీర్యాలతో

నిరంతరం నానిపోయిందేమో

వున్నట్టుండి

చివరికి

ఒకరోజు

చేతుల్లోనే పగిలిపోయింది.

ఇక యిప్పుడు చూడక తప్పలేదు

ఇన్నాళ్ళూ

దేహపుదొండపాదు

అల్లుకున్న పందిరిలా

నావే

అస్థికలు

.

శిఖామణి

తెలుగు కవి

From:

“నల్లగేటు – నందివర్ధనం చెట్టు ” కవితా సంకలనం

Sri Visakhapatnam Kanaka Mahalaksmi… Munipalle Raju, Telugu, Indian

On the eve of First Death Anniversary of Sri Munipalle Raju garu

I had been working in Visakhapatnam for long, but I never occasioned to walk the steps of the Simhachalam Temple or visit the village Goddess, Sri Kanaka Mahalakshmi. My aunt had changed it all that with her recent visit. 

Getting down from the train, she expressed her confusion about the name of the city and station, “What, Chinna! The board shows Waltair Station! Do you work here?”

“Waltair and Visakhapatnam are one and the same, auntie! There is no separate station for Visakhapatnam.”

“Then, when will you arrange for the Lord Narasimha’s Dashan at Simhachalam?”

“You have just arrived. Take some rest first. We shall think of that later.”

“Rest? No way. Your uncle was not well when I started. And your two sisters will be eagerly waiting for my return. Arrange some rickshaw to Simhachalam immediately,” she hurried me.

*

I took her to the Simhachalam Temple in the office jeep I came to receive her. She had a leisurely darshan of the lord. The Banana, wild Champac, Coconut, Jackfruit plantations and the Pineapple groves there had immensely pleased her. Tears streamed down when she hugged the “Kappa Stambham”.  I knew the reason:  My cousins, her two daughters, were still unmarried. I was already twenty five. They were much elder to me.

She took some coconut water before we started up the hill. She did not take anything thereafter. She was on fast almost for the whole day. 

*

By the time I returned from office next day, she had already paid a visit to Kanaka Mahalakshmi Temple taking my neighbor’s daughter for escort.

“Chinna! I made a terrible transgression!” she said with deep regrets, “Without visiting the village goddess first, I visited other deities.”

“Don’t worry auntie. Lord of Simhachalam is also the lord of Kalinga, north Andhra upto Godavari plateau. You need not entertain such worries,” I tried to pacify her.

“But no. I am not happy with the grave sin I committed. I sought for her mercy. I vowed to break coconuts on five successive Fridays if she grants me my wishes.” She broke down again recollecting her unfulfilled wish.

My aunt returned home next day. I really wonder at the spiritual strength of that generation. She started almost a month back with a group of pilgrims from Guntur, took pre-dawn cold bath in the Bay of Bengal every day, attended to seasonal rituals of Magha (lunar month) at Puri Jagannath Temple, and without taking rest for a single day dashed to Visakhapatnam and paid visits to Varaha Narasimha of Simhachalam and Kanaka Mahalaksmi. That she continued to put up with the demanding physical stress and strain, not for her own self but her family, amazed me. Though I was not part of that ‘family’ in the strict sense, her spiritual strength seemed to have touched me. I bade her goodbye. She promised to write to me no sooner than her wish was fulfilled.

Skeptics like me may not find a causal relation between taking a vow and favorable events happen thereafter in one’s life. But not people like my aunt. My aunt could find a groom for my elder cousin.  That she would not remain an old unmarried maid gave my aunt a great relief. “It is up to you to fulfil my vow,” she wrote me.

Why do you think I had started off to Kanaka Mahalakshmi Temple this Friday?

To my surprise, I found it behind the Hindu Reading Room I visited regularly. Interestingly, there was no Temple there at all. There was just a small idol sculpted in Kalinga Style … about twenty yards from me on a small platform, without any semblance of shade or shelter, and confined within grills.  

Even the street was not that wide. I strode through the narrow passage flanked by small vendors on either side. I enquired the price of coconut at a shop and felt for the purse with my hands. I was stunned. I had one or two such experiences earlier in Madras but I never expected people would pick pockets of their own ilk in Andhra Pradesh. Somehow, I reconciled to believing that it would never happen here.

I was staring blankly at the electrical pole in front of the tiled house.

“What Babuji! What are you staring at?” the shopkeeper lady asked me.

I lost my purse, I said. I searched for the purse in my hip pocket once more.

“Did you come by city (bus)?” she enquired.

“Yes, I came by city bus.” I said.

“Where did you take the bus?”

“Akkayyapalem…”

“It looks you are not from these parts. Am I right?”

“Yes, of course.”

My slang betrays that.

I have some very strong convictions in this regard.  Language is a double-edged sword. It can instantly bond people with love on one hand and can drive wedge between them inflaming hatred on the other. When I was in Madras, I read slogans like… “Edamillai… Go back Gongura.” on the walls. I heard people raising those slogans behind my back.  Similarly, “This is not place for you. Go back to Andhra,” during Andhra agitation in Hyderabad. Historians may explain that this kind of reactionary agitations would be incited by feudalistic minds to grab power or by NGO’s for securing government jobs. But I was speaking about common people. The so called “common people” that the politicians, press, news media, Assemblies and Parliament speak so ardently about every minute. Of course, it is only they that need that double-edged sword every minute. In the bonfire of hatred they inflame, they never care to think who are natives or who the migrants are, or the political and economic compulsions behind settling in different administrative set ups.

As these thoughts flashed in my memory, I rather asked impatiently to her innocent question, “Why? Is every stranger an evil person?”

“I did not mean that Babuji! I am myself a stranger to this place. I only meant how the non-natives could understand the deceptions of vizagites?”

I felt really ashamed of my unwarranted anger after listening to her cool compassionate reply.  Only then did I pay any attention to her mien and manner. I could not foresee at that moment that I was inviting some unnecessary troubles.

“Please sit down Babuji! You have been standing there all the while.”

I sat on the package box nearby rather comfortably. That being a Friday, the premises around Kanaka Mahalaksmi idol was busy and there must be hundred ladies performing Pooja.

She was arranging a coconut, few flowers, two incense sticks, packets of turmeric powder and vermillion in a bamboo tray briskly and selling to customers for an Anna less or an Anna more. My thoughts turned to her. I tried to conjecture her age… the exact number between twenty and twenty five. Why did she apply such thick line of collyrium to her eyes? She had a small gob and Champac-like nose… may be I was reconciling to such scanty description for want of better expression and ornate language at my disposal. For her well-proportioned ebony body, the dark-colored saree did not match. Hers was a prettiness that could not be grasped but from close.  

“What Babuji? You are sitting idly. Won’t you break a coconut?”

I am sure I was taken aback coming out from my reverie.

“I am not left with any money,” I said.

“Don’t worry. You may fulfil your vow today and pay me next time.”

“Nobody would believe a stranger. I don’t know what makes you believe me. I shall repay you tomorrow.”

“Why do you say that? Can’t we assess people looking at their mien? Why didn’t madam accompany you? Are you a bachelor?”

“Yes, I am a bachelor.”

“Please come back soon. I have to shut down the shop to go to the movie. By mistake you may hand over that bamboo tray in another shop. Remember my name.  I am Malles(p)ari.”

“I shall remember. Malleswari.”

However quick I tried to finish off my work, it took me around twenty minutes.

As I returned the bamboo tray I noticed a man in his shorts and a collared shirt standing at a distance behind the shop. That round-faced, moustache-less man was observing me closely puffing out smoke from a bidi. I saw him somewhere but could not place him in my mind immediately. I was not sure if it was the city bus I came by.

She returned the tray back to me, saying “Babuji, please pay me five rupees.”

To my surprise, I saw the lost purse in that tray.

My people think I am a fool. However, my friends commend my way of thinking. After a long deliberation within, I just wanted to check if I was right.

When I searched for him the hero was not there. He disappeared.

The purse however seemed as voluminous as before. “Mallespari” was winding up her shop.

Giving her a five rupee note, I asked her rather harshly, “What’s this?”

“Babuji! Take it as the miracle of Kanaka Mahalakshmi.  Please count your money. We are not from this place. Why do we need to follow the cunning ways of the locals?  I am already late…”  After taking few steps, she came back and looking into my face she asked, “Isn’t it a vow for five Fridays?”

“Yes, of course, for five Fridays without break.”

This Malleswari must be his mistress. The coconut business was only a front for these riffraff fellows.  But then, why did she return me my purse? There were almost three hundred rupees in it.  You might have read many stories about lumpens of Visakhapatnam before. I had some firsthand experiences with them as well.  I had a different kind of experience with one of them. Poorna Market is a very famous place in Visakhapatnam. It is a centre where if my your misfortune you try to bargain while buying anything like vegetables, fruits, grocery, fish, chicken, or egg, they unleash every kind of abuse on you. Last summer when I went there to purchase mangoes, the lady offered a dozen mangoes at twelve rupees. When I paid her the twelve, she started arguing that she said eighteen per dozen and I did not hear her properly. She wore at least a kilogram gold on her body and unutterable stock of taboo words on her tongue. She refused to take back the mangoes. Finally, she mediated on her own calling me a stranger who did not understand the local language properly and settled the issue for fifteen rupees.  That was a concession for the stranger. And now, this Malleswari would want me to believe it a miracle of Kanaka Mahalakshmi. Why should they bear pity a stranger? That too, a feigned one?

*

I wrote to my aunt that I was fulfilling her vow.  “Please don’t break the continuity,” she expressed her concern and conveyed her blessings. The marriage day was fixed. I must attend.

The next Friday, taking special permission I visited the temple early in the morning to avoid peak hour rush. Yet, it was very already crowded. I passed Malleswari’s shop.

“Hello Babuji! Have you forgotten Malleswari?” Malleswari called me back. Handing over the tray with Pooja material she added, “Babuji! Do you notice the Police Jawan standing there in Khaki shorts? Tell him my name and he will help you finish your job quickly.”

I had to obey. She returned twenty five paise taking five rupees from me.

What could I say? But, to tease her I said, “Malleswari, I did not take city bus today.”

“Please don’t say that,” she pleaded. But ignoring what she said, I left the place in a hurry.

*

Though I could ignore her then, I realized within two days that this uninvited acquaintance was not going to ignore me that easily. When I reached office I came to know of the training program I was waiting for long and I would not get for another two years if I missed this time. Though it was only a two-week training, it has a definite bearing on my career prospects.

That was Thursday. I should leave by night train to Hyderabad. My mind was searching for proper person to delegate the responsibility bidden to me by my aunt. She was the person who supported my college study after my father had died. I was obliged to fulfil her vow. My house owners were Brahmo Samajis. They were against every kind of idol worship. One family I knew were Christians and with another, I developed a sort of rationalist image. So, I could not ask them. I was forced by circumstances to go to Malleswari.

“Babuji! Have you forgotten the day today? It is only Thursday?” she said.

“Yes! But I came here on purpose. I have to leave by night train to another town on important work. Malleswari, you have to help me tomorrow and next week in fulfilling the vow,” I said.

“Babuji! It’s enough if you call me Malli.  We being low-class people is it alright if we perform the vows on your behalf?”

“God cares little who performs. All that is needed is one should perform it whole-heartedly.  Besides, if you change to light color saris from dark, you look as dignified as any lady from upper class,” I said patting myself for the initiative I had taken.

I saw a fleeting flash of pride at my remark in her face. I also noticed her looking at me adoringly.

“Is it so, Babu? What’s wrong with this color?”

There was an unprecedented familiarity in her tone when she called me Babu instead of Babuji.

“I don’t know. You look much better in light colours. Take this money.” 

“I don’t need money. You are going out of the city. It serves your need. You can pay me after your return.”

“Take this. I don’t have any problem.” I handed over her a ten rupee note. And to tease her further, “didn’t you see my purse the other day?  I have enough money with me.”

She seemed embarrassed.

“Did I count? After all, it’s your money. You did not even tell me your name to perform the Pooja,” she complained.

Giving the name of my aunt I walked up a few steps. I suddenly realized somebody was following me from behind. The same fellow. The pickpocket. As I was taking a turn he came in my way. Locking the scooter I turned towards Reading Room. His first warnings were directed towards me…

“Let me warn you! Don’t flirt with that gal. It is not good for your health.”

I already said that I have some firm convictions about people and their behaviour.  If we are afraid of rowdies, they would ride over us … was one of them.

“Who are you to say that?” I shot an angry look at him.

“Don’t you know? Everybody knows this Ramana, including police,” he said. He must be roaming between Berhampur to Nellore. There wasn’t any particular slang in his speech.

“So what?”

“I am from Burma. A Burma evacuee. Why do you dally with that lass?”

“I don’t care if you are a Rangoon Rowdy or a London evacuee. I know you picked my pocket? What is she to you? Are you her husband?”

It was a blind shot. My hunch worked. The result was an evasive answer from a man whose confidence took a dent.

“Should I be her husband? That gal came to me. Don’t suppose her to be a woman from the barracks. You will get a sound beating.”

He was telling me she was not a wanton woman that roam about police barracks. I wanted to give him a taste of what his threats. But with better sense prevailing, I said,

“Oy, Ramana! It is clear that you are a number one fool. Malleswari is a woman of character. I am leaving you without doing harm only for her sake. Better you know about me. I am a magistrate. Never in your life can you get into a bus. Listen. I did not come here to dally with her. I came here for a pious cause. Understand? Get lost!”

The harshness of my voice sounded strange to my own self. But, having been convinced of my opinion about people and their behaviour, I was pleased and thought I could count myself one amongst the social scientists. I started my scooter. There was a lingering concern that I should perhaps have informed Malleswari about this.

Maybe, I was not too convinced about the character of Malleswari whom I defended so strongly. That’s why neither I turned the scooter towards her nor did I remember her during training.

*

I visited my aunt on my way back. I did not want to bore her with my training matters. So I briefed her about the happenings at Visakhapatnam and how I tried to attend to her five-Fridays vow.

When she blessed me saying, “You are so innocent at heart Chinna! If you have developed faith and devotion, it is only because of the blessings of Goddess Kanaka Mahalakshmi,” I felt sure Malleswari did not break the continuity. And as for my elder cousin, what could I speak of her delight! She was happy to get an employed groom who did not insist on dowry. Marriage was to be performed soon. It’s nothing short of dreams coming true!

I reported for duty on Friday. As I was feeling happy that with the last instalment that evening was a culmination of fulfilling my aunt’s vow, Ramana and Malleswari flashed in my memory. Suddenly and I felt guilty to delegate that responsibility to such an unscrupulous woman. I wondered why I could not see through her intentions when she returned my purse.

Setting aside all my apprehensions, I got ready to go to the temple taking bath afresh in the evening. I took a rickshaw to the temple. Malleswari’s shop bore a desolate look. The person was also not there. I bought the necessary ingredients from the neighboring shopkeeper who was keenly watching me. I paid my oblation to the goddess with due confession and seeking forgiveness for the lapses.

Malleswari was standing in front of me. There were two halves of a coconut almost smelling foul and a half a rupee coin in her hands. She looked an incarnation of grief and her eyes were teeming with tears ready to break the barrier any moment.

“Babu! I looked for you in the morning. I know you will come any way in the evening. I fulfilled your vow without break.”

“What happened?” I asked her. It was then I noticed she donned a light-color saree. Her beauty was not without… it was manifesting from within. I was so overwhelmed with pity, gratitude and passion that I was tempted to embrace that unlettered girl and reassure her. But can I do so in public?

“Get into the rickshaw,” I asked her as the street lights were put on. She got in without any hesitation.

“Did you take your lunch?’ I asked.

She turned her head indicating she did not.

Sitting in the restaurant cabin on the first floor, and holding the reins of my emotions I enquired,

“Malli! Do you have any schooling?”

She looked at me bewildered and said,

“I studied up to class nine.”

“Then why do you speak like an unlettered person?”

“Babu! Do you know the kind of people I live among? If I show any superiority on that count, do you think my life will be safe?”

Very pragmatic and undecorated fact.

“Then why did you entertain such a mean fellow like Ramana?”

The way she looked at me conveyed that she pitied my innocence.

“Babu! Many creepers grow in the forest. If there is no support of a tree or stump for them to entwine, they will be mercilessly stomped and trampled by every beast and bovine. Without Ramana, my life would become wretched. Will this world allow a woman to live on her own? Babu! This is a wild … wild… forest.”

She stopped eating and started crying.

I understood Malleswari too had her own convictions about people and their behaviour.

“Why are you weeping?” I asked.

“She was thrown into a jail Babu! When he was selling tickets in black-market at the theatres, I restrained him. When he was picking pockets, I fought with him and stopped. I reasoned him out to run our business with dignity. He will agree to everything. But, no sooner the day turns to night, devil seizes him. He runs away to play “Matka”. Without playing that game he will not be at peace.  They caught him red-handed the other day thieving along with others near harbor. He is such a timid fellow that cannot do such things on his own. Only the bad company has encouraged him.”

“If he is really timid, how could he dare to challenge me that day?”

As if she wanted to explain me an esoteric truth, she pulled her chair forward.

“Babu! I came to know about that. I chided him. I censured him. When I speak with other men…” she paused…

“Yes, I can understand. He gets jealous.”

“Whatever it is. He doesn’t like anybody speaking ill of me.”

I tried to assess the situation she was in.

“Malli! You sold out all your ware and spent for Ramana. Isn’t it?”

She kept mum.

After a while she said, “I thought I could bail him out. But it did not work out.”

“Do one thing. Don’t you think you need to take care of yourself?”

“Babu! I trusted you will come to my rescue. Goddess Kanaka Mahalaksmi never failed me.”

I pulled out three notes from my purse.

“How much it costs to start your business all over again?”

She made some calculations and said, “one hundred and fifty rupees, Babu!”

I gave her the money. And added, “I make enquiries how to bail out Ramana. I can inform you the progress only after two days.”

As I was about to leave, she stopped me and said, “Didn’t he brag about that he was from Burma and an evacuee?”

“Yes.”

“But it was all a white lie. He was conceited. He comes from a small village near Vizianagaram. I am from Anakapalle. We eloped in the style of cinemas.”

“And yet, you did not stop seeing cinemas.”

“What can we do?” 

She answered the root-cause of all problems, helplessness, in a matter-of-fact way.

“I changed to light colors on your advice.”

I noticed it before. Amidst all her engulfing grief and helplessness, she did not lose hope of life. Can I cultivate that urge? Never.

Unable to say anything in return, I said, “I don’t like you speaking in that slang.”

*

I got my promotion and with it my transfer. I had a week’s time to report at the new place. And my sister’s marriage was few days thereafter.

*

I was busy for the next three days. Malleswari was attending to her business as usual when I went there. She tried to give me a coconut.

“Let me come to it later. But first listen. I arranged for Ramana’s bail. But he will get two months sentence for sure. Go to this address. The pleader will identify you. They release Ramana on bail either tomorrow or the day after. Put him under your control at least from now on.”

She was awe-struck. “You… you…” she was searching for words to say something.

“I got my transfer and I am leaving.”

Taking coconut from her, I expressed my lingering doubt, “by the way, he will not run away during bail period. Isn’t it?”

Perhaps she was trying to regroup herself to speak, she answered standing in the shade of the pillar,

“No, Babu! He cannot leave me!”

“Good! Bye!”

“But Babu, shall I return your money by money order?”

“You can do it later. Not now.  Besides, I may turn up at Visakhapatnam in future.”

I did not look back.

Possibly, she might not have understood the import of my words. Yet, I was happy for what I did.

*

Next day, I booked my scooter by railway parcel and reached my room very late. Malleswari was sitting at the doorstep. It was late in the night. Almost ten o’ clock.

“What happened? Did they release Ramana on bail?”

“They said they would release him tomorrow afternoon.”

As I entered the room, she followed me.

“Why did you trouble yourself coming all the way to inform this? And that too, at this late hour?”

“Babu! How much did you pay to the lawyer?”

“Don’t bother about it. Take a rickshaw and go home. It is late already.”

She did not leave. She was standing. She donned a light blue sari and the jasmines in her tresses were wafting sweet scents around.

“I want to sleep here tonight.” She said in her natural sonorous tone looking at me. She was looking at me through the silence. She was manifesting her beauty under the electrical lights. It was a prolonged silence where I was recovering myself.

“You wanted to repay your debt with your youth. Isn’t it?” I asked.

She did not reply.

“You owe me nothing. There was no debt or obligation between us. In fact, it is us who are beholden to people like you. Malli! I am not sure if you can understand what I say. But, ours is an irredeemable debt. It grows with interest every day. When did I take you to the hotel? Yesterday or the day before? I would have brought you to my room thinking mean of you. But your view of life, and your trust in me reopened my eyes. You taught me a great moral, standing on the high pedestal of a Guru! Please come. Let me arrange a safe passage home!”

As she tried to touch my feet before getting into a rickshaw, I refrained her.

“Don’t you allow me even to pay my respects? Goddess Kanaka Mahalakshmi put me to a severe test.  It is you who passed the test, not me!”

They did not sound cinematic. They touched my ears like the subtle ripplings from a grief-stricken heart. 

Rickshaw-puller intervened saying, “the days when due respect was accorded to elders were gone. There is nothing wrong in her paying respects to you. Let her!”

The rickshaw melted into the night leaving the silence behind.

I left Visakhapatnam soon.

But, how can I forget the Visakhapatnam Kanaka Mahalakshmi who restored my pride of being a human being!

Never! Never ever!    

*

Munipalle Raju

(16th Mar 1925 – 24th Feb 2018)

Telugu, Indian

First Published Swati (June 1987)

Make Your Voice Count… Abd Wahed, Telugu, Indian Poet

The foot falls of a black ant

On the black marble

On an Ebony night

Is too faint to hear.

The sound of the canon

Aimed at the heart of a city

Of, course is better audible.

The explosive sound of a bomb

That annihilates the innocent people

Is of a moderate pitch.

The unleashed agony of the head

Separating from torso on the gallows

Is of a higher order.

The cursive sound of the letters

On a white paper

Is considerably high.

The thumping of the heart

Of an injured Poet

Is of a higher order.

The collective cries of

Crows and common Swallows

Is of the highest order.

The ruffle of scared pigeons

Unnerves us more than the

The twang of a hunter’s bowstring.

Once you make your voice count

Even the guts of an arrow shall shake.

.

Wahed Abd

Telugu

Indian

From “Dhuuli Chettu” Anthology

Abd Wahed
Photo Courtesy: Abd Wahed

గొంతు విప్పు                                                  

నల్లరాత్రి

నల్లశిలపై

నల్ల చీమ అడుగుల సవ్వడి

చాలా చిన్నది.

నగరం గుండెలపై

పేలే ఫిరంగి చప్పుడు

కాస్త పెద్దదే

అమాయకజనాన్ని హతమార్చే

బాంబు పేలుడు శబ్దం

ఇంకొంచెం పెద్దది

ఉరికొయ్యపై

విరిగిన మెడచేసే ఆర్తనాదం

ఇంకా పెద్దది.

తెల్లని కాగితంపై

పరుగెత్తే అక్షరాల చప్పుడు

చాలా పెద్దది

గాయపడిన కవి

గుండె చప్పుడు

అన్నింటికన్నా పెద్దది

గోలచేసి అరిచే కాకులు

ఊరపిచ్చుకలఘోష

ఇంకా పెద్దది.

వేటగాడి వింటితాడు చేసే ధ్వనికన్నా

పిట్టలరెక్కల చప్పుడు

గుండెలవిసేలా చేస్తుంది

గొంతు విప్పడం నేర్చుకుంటే

బాణం కూడా భయపడుతుంది.

.

వాహెద్

ధూళిచెట్టు కవితా సంకలనం

A Fragrant Cloud … Elanaga, Telugu Poet

Ustad Rashid Khan …

Is a towering musical wave.

When that gust of pleasant camphoric fragrance

Wafts in every direction

Oh! What a festival treat it is for all yearning ears!

As the vibrant voice pervades and fills

The environ like a fragrant cloud,

Won’t its daub of celestial music

Heal the wounds of the heart within

And transport the subject to the limits of ecstasy?

 

That mellifluous rendering of lilting Tarana

In the ‘Desi” Rag,

That peerless natural presentation

Streaming spontaneously

From an unruffled meditative state

Rekindles the latent dormant life-force

And the sonorous voice

Brings to fore eons of quiescent vitality.

 

O, Future hope of Hindustani classical vocal!

Let more and more Khayals ignite in your voice,

Let the festoons of Taranas

Remind us of the musical festivals.

Let this earth bathe in the gentle winds

That have a touch of your Sweet scented voice.

 

.

Elanaga

Telugu, Indian

Image Courtesy
Elanaaga

పరిమళ మేఘం.

 

ఉస్తాద్ రాషిద్ ఖాన్.

ఒక ఉత్తుంగ సంగీత తరంగం.

గుప్పుమనే ఒక కమనీయ కర్పూర సౌరభం.

అన్నిదిక్కులా అది పరచుకున్నదంటే

ఎన్ని కర్ణేంద్రియాలకు పండుగో!

చుట్టూ పరిమళమేఘంగా

పరివ్యాప్తమయే స్వరచాలనం

గంధర్వగానామృత లేపనంతో

గుండెలోపలిగాయాలు మాయమై

పల్లవించదా పారవశ్యం?

దేశం‘ (1)లో తళుకులీనిన

తారళ్యపు తరానా

నిశ్చలసమాధిలో

నిసర్గంగా వెలయించిన అనిరుపమ గానం (2)

పరిమళించే ప్రాణశక్తిని లేపుతూ

యుగయుగాల సుప్త చేతనను

మేల్కొలిపే కంఠమాధుర్యం.

 

భావిభారత సంగీతరంగపు ఆశాదీపమా! (3)

ఖయ్యాలులు ని కంఠంలో రగులనీ మరింతగా

తరానాల తోరణాలు

తలపించనీ సంగీత వసంతోత్సవాలని.

నీ సుస్వర సమీరాల సుగంధస్పర్శతో

పులకించనీ పుడమినంతా!

.

ఎలనాగ

 

  1. దేశ్రాగంలో తరానా

  2. గోరఖ్ కళ్యాణ్ రాగంలో దాదాపు 62 నిముషాల పాటు అద్భుతంగా సాగే ఖయ్యాల్

  3. ఉస్తాద్ రాషిద్ ఖాన్ గురించి భారత రత్న పండిత్ భీం సేన్ జోషి చేసిన వ్యాఖ్య

 

నీ పరోక్షంలో … షెర్నాజ్ వాడియా, భారతీయ కవయిత్రి

ఇకనుండీ నన్ను వివశను చేసే నీ బుంగమూతీ,

నవ్వితే సొట్టలుపడే నీ చిరునవ్వూ కనరావు కదా!

చుట్టూ ఉన్న రణగొణధ్వనినిసైతం ఛేదించుకుని

దాని ప్రతిధ్వనులు రహస్యంగా నా చెవుల్లో ఊసులాడుతూ

నా ఒంటరి విషాదాశ్రులు తుడిచి నన్నూరడించే

నీ కమనీయ కంఠధ్వని… ఉహూఁ, వినిపించదు.

నీ కరస్పర్శలోని ఇంద్రజాలం నేను పోగొట్టుకున్నాను.

నీ లాలనలో ఎంత మహిమ ఉందంటే

అది నాలో ఇంకా జీవితేచ్ఛని రగిలించేది.

ఉద్వేగభరితమైన నా జీవిత గమకాన్ని

అలవోకగా అర్థంచేసుకుని నన్నలరించే

నీ కనుల దయార్ద్రరుచి … ఇక ఎన్నటికీ కరువే.

అన్నిటినీ మించి, నే నొంటరిగా దిగులుతో పొగులునపుడు

ప్రియాతిప్రియ నేస్తమా!చెంత నీ సాన్నిధ్యం లభించదుకదా!

.

షెర్నాజ్ వాడియా

సమకాలీన భారతీయ కవయిత్రి

 

 

Now That You Are No More

.

All the while I miss your alluring smile

the way  your mouth crinkled and your cheeks dimpled…

I miss the sound of your comforting voice

its echoes pierce the surrounding noise

and linger softly in my ears

wiping away my tears…

I miss the magic of your touch.

The power of your cares was such

that it imbues in me the will to live…

I miss the sympathy of your soft eyes

and the quiet understanding which discerned

the emotional tumult of my life…

But most of all when I am lonely and blue

Dearest love, I miss sweet you!

.

October 23, 2005

Shernaz Wadia

Contemporary Indian Poetess 

కాలవిహంగము… సరీజినీ నాయుడు, భారతీయ కవయిత్రి

ఓ కాల విహంగమా! ఫలభరితమైన నీ పొదరింటినుండి

నువ్వు ఏ రాగాలను ఆలపిస్తున్నావు?

జీవితంలోని ఆనందం, గొప్పతనం గురించా,

పదునైన దుఃఖాలూ, తీవ్రమైన వివాదాలగురించా?

హుషారైన వాసంత గీతాలనా;

రానున్న భవిష్యత్తు గురించి బంగారు కలలనా,

రేపటిఉదయానికి వేచిఉండగల ఆశగురించా?

ప్రాభాత వేళల పరిమళభరితమైన తెమ్మెరలగురించా

మనుషులు మరణమని పిలిచే మార్మిక నిశ్శబ్దంగురించా?

ఓ కాలవిహంగమా! నీ గొంతులో అవిరళంగా మారే

నీ శృతుల గమకాలను ఎక్కడ నేర్చావో చెప్పవూ?

ప్రతిధ్వనించే అడవులలోనా, విరిగిపడే అలలలోనా

ఆనందంతో తృళ్ళిపడే నవవధువుల నవ్వులలోనా?

అప్పుడే పొడచూపుతున్న వసంత నికుంజాలలోనా?

తల్లి ప్రార్థనలకు పులకించే తొలిపొద్దులోనా?

నిరుత్సాహపడిన హృదయానికి ఆశ్రయమిచ్చే యామినిలోనా?

జాలిగా విడిచే నిట్టూర్పులోనా, ఈర్ష్యతో కలిగే రోదనలోనా

లేక విధిని ధిక్కరించిన మనసు ఆత్మవిశ్వాసంలోనా?
.

సరోజినీ నాయుడు

(13 February 1879 – 2 March 1949)

భారతీయ కవయిత్రి

 

.

The Bird of Time

.

O Bird of Time on your fruitful bough

What are the songs you sing? …

Songs of the glory and gladness of life,

Of poignant sorrow and passionate strife,

And the lilting joy of the spring;

Of hope that sows for the years unborn,

And faith that dreams of a tarrying morn,

The fragrant peace of the twilight’s breath,

And the mystic silence that men call death.

O Bird of Time, say where did you learn

The changing measures you sing? …

In blowing forests and breaking tides,

In the happy laughter of new-made brides,

And the nests of the new-born spring;

In the dawn that thrills to a mother’s prayer,

And the night that shelters a heart’s despair,

In the sigh of pity, the sob of hate,

And the pride of a soul that has conquered fate.

.

Sarojini Naidu

(13 February 1879 – 2 March 1949)

Indian Poet

Poem Courtesy:

https://www.poetrynook.com/poem/bird-time

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