থৱায় ৱাবা মরক্তা পূক্নীং লুমবা

অহিং৷
মপান্দা অকিবা নোংলৈ নুংশীৎ৷
মনুংসিদদি
লূূূম্না নিনবা খরদমক মরোলদি খঙদনা
য়ূম্লোননবনা খৎনবগুুুম
অঙাংনা ঙক্না কিনা তাবদু না থাঙ্গৎতুনা৷

অরাপপদগি লাকপা মরী থোক্নদবগি অৱাবা পাউ
কদায়দগিনো লীৎশিল্লক শোননা নোম্লৈ
অপাবা য়ুুুখল অঙৌবা থোঙনাউদা, ফক্লাংদা, লময়ায়দা
তপ্না ইমুংগি মম্লিবা অচীকপদা৷
করিশু থোক্তে ইমুুংসিদদি৷
অমম্বা অমসুং অচীকপদা লৈরৈ
লৈবগুম লৈতবগুুম, লেঙবগুম লেঙদবগুম
খোঙগুল তাদবা করিনো খঙদবা অমা
লম্মাঙনরবা হৌদোঙ মচাগুম৷

ফি থোংদবা হনুবা
কোনশিন্দুনা তূমই মমাগি পূক্নুংদগুম
য়ূমগি মনুুংদা
অমম্বদা৷

 

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হনুবগি থোঙনাউদা

য়াচঙবা। হনুবা লেপ্পী থোঙনাউদা
থম্লগা খূৎ পায়বদগি লংলবা থোঙনাউ মচৈদা।
মশা লূম্লবা অঙাঙবা নুমীৎ মিরাং মহুম মরুমদা।
ঙাইহাক্তসু পল্লদি ফনিদা!
তাহননীংদে নুমীৎসে করিগুম্বদা
লেঙলবসু পুনসিনা নুমীৎনা লেঙবদা।

থেংলৈ হেক হেক করিগুম্বা অমা মাগি ৱাখলদা
চৎখিনি শোকপদমক শোক্লম্লগা,
অদৈ অদুম মাঙখিবা নুংশিবগি অরোইবা খোন্থোক্কুম।
থোঙ থীনবদমক থীনবা শকখঙদবা মরূপ
ওইরদবা মীথুংদি কৈদৌনুং–
নুংশীৎতি থীন্দেদনা থোঙ থোঙ হাংবদা লেপ্লম্লসু!
লাকপদি লাক্কনি অমুক তপ্না হান্নগুম অদুম
তিংহৌরবগুম শোল্লবা মরী অমুক।
হনুবা পারুগনি অরিবা চিথী হন্দুনা ঙসিদা থুংলবগুম অমুক
ফাক্লুগনি চেনাশিং শৈরেংগি শৈরেংদি অমত্তসু য়াওদবা
চৎলুগনি থোকখিদ্রবা থৌদোকশিংগি খোঙ্গুলদা
হল্লক্লগা লেপ্লনি থোঙনাউসিদা
য়েংলনি মসিদগি উবা খরা
খঙদবগি অমম্বা মফমসিদদি মচু হোংবগুম।

উমংগি মতাইদা ঊনা ৱানা খরা লেঙবগুম
মশেন মরাং, য়েংলকপগুম শা অমনা থোঙনাউদা
পাউখুম পীরিবগুম পাউখোঙনা হংগনি নীংলুদবা ৱাহংগি।

অদুদগিদি  নুশীৎ …
মতম শুরবা ঊনাশিংসে হেকপিরে মালং খূৎশানা
পুবীরে লম্বী লৈতবা লাইফম অমদগি অমদা উমংগি।

তক তক তক …
থীল্লক্লে থোঙ।

Tomas Tranströmergi Sheireng

Translations by Thoithoi O’Cottage of sixty-two poems selected from Tranströmer’s ten poetry collections. The book was launched by N. Kiran Kumar, Convener of Manipuri Language Advisory Board, Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi, at the Auditorium of Library & Information Center, Kakching Phoushupat Leikai on 4 May 2018. The launch was presided over by writer and educationist Kunjo Pukhrambam, and poet and novelist Dr. Pukhrambam Rajendra and poet, short story writer and critic Biprachand Pukhrambam spoke about the book.

Petrichor Poets and Poetry

Oxford Bookstore, Connaught Place, New Delhi hosted a poetry reading session on the evening of 9 February 2018. That was part of the run-up readings to Delhi Poetry Festival 5 (IIT, New Delhi, 23 – 25 February 2018). Over a score of poets gathered on that calm evening. The program was organized in collaboration with Petrichor, a creative writing society of over 120 members based in Venkateswara College of Delhi University.

Petrichor started as a club in the Department of English of the college to provide the students poets and writers with a consciously nurturing space for creativity, which was nonexistent there then. The society has collaborated with Oxford Bookstore, CP, New Delhi, and Delhi Poetry Festival.

Poets from Petrichor, including Arijit Roy, founder and President of the society, also read their poems. I photographed all of the poets while they were reading their poems. Some of them are below. These photographs may not be of all those Petrichor poets. If any poet is missing, I will add them here soon. As I don’t know anything about them yet, not even their names (except of a couple of them), I have left the photographs with no textual accompaniment. I will request Arijit to tell me at least their names. It would be a great idea to post a few poems each (including the ones they read that evening) along with the poets’ photographs.

Megha Sawhney

Rajeev Anand

Misk Khurana

Aditya Rao

Vridhi Arora

Sukeerat Channi

Arijit Roy, founder and President of Petrichor

There are various other versions of the photographs here. If the poets want any or all of the versions to be sent to them, write to Lake Bard here. It may take some time but Thoithoi O’Cottage replies. As he does this just in the interest of the poets and not for any commercial purposes, he entertains requests at his leisure.

 

Promila Manhas

A Dogri writer and poet with a beautiful voice living in Jammu. Literary translator translating from Dogri to Hindi and English, and vice versa. Lecturer of Botany in the School Education Department of the State Government of Jammu & Kashmir. Newscaster at Radio Kashmir and news anchor at Doordarshan Jammu.

She read some of her poems at the Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi’s annual Festival of Letters on 16 February 2018.

Manipuri Poet, Srilekhak

Manipuri poet and playwright, Srilekhak (born Ksh. Mohan) at the launch of Yengkhom Kengba’s Manipuri novel at ROLs in January 2017. Srilekhak is one of the most experimental poets in Manipur. Influenced much by the Japanese haiku tradition of the east and the imagist and modern poetry, his poetry is characteristically sharp and formal as its primary drive. His metaphors and similes are unusually powerful unlike any other Manipuri poets among his contemporaries or younger generations.

His once-famous Times Printers (late 1980s – 1997), located on the leirak across from the old post office building at Kakching Khunyai Leikai, was the center of literature in the town of Kakching. Besides printing almost every literature book and magazine published during that period here, he regularly hosted literary readings and critical sessions in his press office.

My translations of his two poetry collections will soon come out from LSC.

চোংশিন্নবা / Face to Face

Face to Face
by Tomas Tranströmer (1931–2015)
Nobel Prize in Literature (2011)

ৱাকচীংদা চপ লেপখি হিংবা৷
উচেক্না তন্না পাই অদুগা থৱায়না
তকই লমহাঙ লমজাউদা শুরু শুরু
তক্তুনা লৈবগুম হিনা হিথাঙফমগি পুনফমদা৷

উপালশিংনা লেপ্পী মনম ওনশিন্দুনা ঐঙোন্দা৷
থানা শীল্লবা উন মরেপ ওল্লী অশিবা চরূনা৷
মন্থরকই খোঙ্গুলশিংনা লৈমায়দা৷
ৱাজরে লোনদি তিরপাল মখাদা৷

নোংমদি লাকই কৈনো’মা থোঙনাউদা৷
খূৎকি থবক থা, লৈদুনা য়েংখৎলুই ঐ৷
মচু মমেন্না ইঙান! ঙম্নমক লৈদুনা য়েংলম্লে৷
মালেমগা ঐগা চোংশিন্নৈ৷

 

Roblin Fulton’s translation:

In February living stood still.
The birds flew unwillingly and the soul
chafed against the landscape as a boat
chafes against the pier it lies moored to.

The trees stood with their backs turned to me.
The deep snow was measured with dead straws.
The footprints grew old out on the crust.
Under a tarpaulin language pined.

One day something came to the window.
Work was dropped, I looked up.
The colors flared. Everything turned around.
The earth and I sprang toward each other.

মঙ্গারকপা / Back from a funeral

The poem came visually and aurally, quite in a pre-linguistic fashion. Yes, when I woke up from sleep in the middle of the black night. Then when I got down to writing, the visuals and audios crystalled themselves linguistically. This process is a subtle aesthetic orgasmic experience, and you don’t ever want to get over this. For this one, the linguistic crystallization occurred simultaneously in two languages–some parts in Manipuri, and some other parts in English, the two languages I straddle most comfortably. The blended nature of how I experienced the original bilingual poem has its own distinct, irreplaceable beauty; however, I have separated the strands for better presentation, translated parts from one language to another and vice versa, and have presented the two versions as below, the English and Manipuri lines kept abreast of each other.

Assuming some may find the line alignment of the English version in the ‘preformatted” juxtaposition with Manipuri uncomfortable, I have reproduced the English version at the bottom of the post again.

ঈশিংদা তাশিল্লে                      Fallen into the water.      
কদায়দগিনো খঙদনা--                God knows from where—
অরূবা ঈশিং                        clear water,
ত্রৎ ঈংবা ঈশিং,                     freezing cold
হকচাং কয়াৎ পূম্বা য়াথোকহনবা৷          getting around all organs.
হোই,                             Yes,
মখূৎতু ঙাইহাক্তি লাম্মী                 the hands grope awhile
মখোঙদু ঙাইহাক্তি কাওই৷               the legs kick awhile.
অদৈদি ঈশিংদু হঞ্জিল্লকই                 Then the water returns
করিশু খঙজদবা মতৌদা৷               to its placid innocence.
ফমজিনখ্রবা ঈমায়দা ফমদুনা             Crouched on the icy surface
উই মশাগি হোৎনবা পূম্বা               he sees all his own efforts
ঈশিংনা চূপশিনখিবা,                  being sucked up by the water,
মাগি ফিথোংদবা হকচাং                 his naked body
অঙৌবা গুলিগুমই                     a blueish-white tablet
অরূবা গ্লাসকি ঈশিংদা                 in a glass of clean water
তুমদ্রঙৈ ঙাইহাক্কি প্রীক প্রীক৷             noiselessly bubbling awhile
                                 before it dissolves.

অহিং নোংয়ায়দা মীৎকপ থোরকই৷         He wakes up at midnight.
মঙ্গারকপগুমই মদু                    It feels like back from a funeral
অঙকপা অমম্বা লমদম অমদগি৷           in a strange dark place

মুশিবা তেবল লেম্প নাকলদা              A glass of clean water
অরূবা ঈশিং গ্লাস৷                     beside the shaded table lamp.
অঙৌবা গুলি অমা থাদৈ৷                 He drops a blueish-white tablet in it.
কোঙ্গোল মচা খরা পৃক পৃক              A few tiny bubbles prick up
ঙাইহাক৷                            just awhile.

অমুক তূমথবা য়াদ্রে                     He can't bring himself
মহাক৷                              back to sleep.

The English version is reproduced below again:

Fallen into the water.
God knows from where—
clear water,
freezing cold
getting around all organs.
Yes,
the hands grope awhile
the legs kick awhile.
Then the water returns
to its placid innocence.
Crouched on the icy surface
he sees all his own efforts
being sucked up by the water,
his naked body
a bluish-white tablet
in a glass of clean water
noiselessly bubbling awhile
before it dissolves.

He wakes up at midnight.
It feels like back from a funeral
in a strange dark place.

A glass of clean water
beside the shaded table lamp.
He drops a blueish-white tablet in it.
A few tiny bubbles prick up
just awhile.

He can’t bring himself
back to sleep.