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POKHREL, Suman



Trees

My eyes are upon the trees.


For, trees do not live in fragments.

Till they fall, they stand

Flanked by life in its own embrace.


In the daytime sun is enough

In the rain, rain.

Their hunger does not outdo

The size of their won.


Breeze means a dance for them

Moon means joy.

When darkness accompanies them

They invite it for sports.


Trees do not seek to get

Beyond where their roots meet

They never dream of flying, Their

Roots in the air.


They do not need anything but

Soil to stand on.

They don't pine for a thing after

Branches, leaves, birds.

Trees do not allow, their dreams

To wander

Further than the horizon

Their eyes meet.


And I, weary of life's

Haste and woes,

Tired in the mind, body and all else,

Here sit on the earth low

And against the background of

The horizon of a rising moon,

Stare at the trees.


Ah! They are erect without cares

Those evergreen temples,

Across the landscape

Of my eyes.


Children


Even if they try to pluck it,
the flower submits itself onto their hands.
If it happens to prick their heels,
the thorn scorns itself all its life.

The dream too thinks twice, gets filtered to go soft
to be seated on their eyes.

Once positioned on their lips,
even the scariest of words
come out as a melodious lisp.

The hill river rushing downhill, mocking at birds,
having heard their clean laughter
repents for its pride
and flows quietly to Madhes.

Even If they fall during their play,
the nature, having come
under the spell of their creative sports,
doesn’t know when they again start to play so full of jest.
Believing that they fall unknowingly
the ground, mostly, does not even hurt them.

Even after the ages of exercise, not any flower could adopt
the innocence of their smile.
Instruments of music, after their company
with music maestros for centuries,
failed to acquire the sonority of their voice.

If they smash, the flower vase assumes a smile
while turning into pieces.
For a chance to be spilled by their hands,
anything they hold gets spilled itself full of happiness.
For a chance to play with them,
water forgets about its own colourlessness.

I wonder –
didn’t the Creator really do injustice?
With a power to defeat everyone without any battle,
children are busy at play with the most beautiful moments of their life.
Once they grow conscious of it,
those moments will have gone away
never to return to them.

(Translated by Mukul Dahal)



While Parting


I've also felt

all windows were watching

all walls were listening,

I'd also felt at that time

streets and footpaths were speaking

and veils were lifting.


I've felt

even when I was walking

even when I was stopping

all trees and birds

sky and stars

bosoms and bangles

were seeing everything.


It's true

in that hesitation

whether to stop or proceed

get off or get over,

all roads had appeared

unfathomable.


It's true

I had also read

on the face of surroundings

some broken

some disconnected

some cracked expectations.


I've touched some sentences

and have kissed some words.


Eyes that obstruct the road can be removed

but what happens when hearts block the passage?

that's why

I've also pretended not to see

the windows and walls.


At such time

it has also seemed to me

there've been conspiracies against me,

search for instruments

to hit me in my words

has also been going on.


I've also felt

those eyes and looks

have also been sending a river

of the flowers of feelings somewhere,

raising a hill of the aromas of imagination.


And have experienced at such time

my mind sleeping in the joy of love.

and have felt some arid passion taking me somewhere

lopping off sensitive branches of life.


At such moments

felt my mind wake up with the temptation of life

gathering courage for flowering beauty

even in the desert of living.


Do not think

I've reached where I am now

by slipping like a landslide

or evaporating like a cloud.


I've climbed up here

holding the hilt of time's sword

after driving it

into my tender heart.


Whether anybody comes to convince me or not

a part of my life does always ache

arresting my chest.



(Translated by Abhi Subedi)