Varnamala : Contemporary Oriya Poetry

 
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PRATIBHA SATPATHY
 

SO NOW YOU HAVE A PLACE IN HISTORY


You had sought a place in history.  
Well, you will now exist  
in history and nowhere else.  
It probably did not occur to you  
that once you entered history there was no exit,  
you would forever remain  
far away from my embrace.  
I had always wanted  
that you did not turn into history,  
that you stayed beside me,  
that your eyes accompanied me like stars,  
that your midnight whisper caressed me  
like a tender word of solace,  
that your love played about like a breeze  
in my body's universe  
spread out like a peacock's feathers.  
I had never wanted  
my secret life to turn into history.  

I have seen history's rock-like silence.  
I comprehend  
the sadness in time's eyes.  
I therefore know there is no way out for you  
in history's pages,  
there are no steps you can climb  
in the dark region of time  
you inhabit.  

The road will always be without traffic.  
Blasts of cold wind will never cease.  
There will be darkness everywhere.  
God knows how many times you will be dismantled  
and reassembled by the useless magic of my thought.  

History is an emperor.  
It does not know common folk like you and me.  
Senseless with the pride of its eternal life,  
it tramples upon the soul's longings  
uttered in a language without words.  
  

Translation :
Ramakanta Rath  

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