Varnamala : Contemporary Oriya Poetry

 
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BASUDEV SUNANI
 

PLAY-ACTING


Just because,  
along with my friends,  
I jumped into the river  
near my village  
don't take it  
for granted that  
I know swimming.  

Just because I have  
at times catapulted a crow  
perched on a mango tree  
one afternoon,  
don't consider me  
an ace archer.  

If I see a pitiful sight  
I can't help crying;  
if I see a sword  
or a knife  
I wet my trousers.  

And you prod me  
to go to the pandal ?  
Wear the crown  
and be a king ?  

Keep the crown to yourself.  
I don't want to be a king.  

Even if it's in a play  
I will not fight;  
even if it is a story  
that someone's family  
is being ruined,  
I cannot smile.  


Translation :
Rabindra K Swain   

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