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Daridro (Poverty)

O poverty, thou hast made me great

Thou hast made me honoured like Christ

With his crown of thorns. Thou hast given me

Courage to reveal all. To thee I owe

My insolent, naked eyes and sharp tongue.

Thy curse has turned my violin to a sword...

O proud saint, thy terrible fire

Has rendered my heaven barren.

O my child, my darling one

I could not give thee even a drop of milk

No right have I to rejoice.

Poverty weeps within my doors forever

As my spouse and my child.

Who will play the flute?

Translation Kabir Chowdhury

Bidrohi (The Rebel)

I am the unutterable grief,

I am the trembling first touch of the virgin,

I am the throbbing tenderness of her first stolen kiss.

I am the fleeting glance of the veiled beloved,

I am her constant surreptitious gaze...

I am the burning volcano in the bosom of the earth,

I am the wildfire of the woods,

I am Hell's mad terrific sea of wrath!

I ride on the wings of lightning with joy and profundity,

I scatter misery and fear all around,

I bring earthquakes on this world!

I am the rebel eternal,

I raise my head beyond this world,

High, ever erect and alone!

Translation Kabir Choudhary

Come Hither

Come hither, the 'fallen', the 'impure', the 'outcasts'!

Let us all worship The Holy Mother together!

Only when all castes and all nations

Assemble at Her feet, side by side without fear;

Only where we are not bound by temple, priest or scriptures

Can we properly worship the Goddess

Only when brothers sit side by side, worshiping together

Will she embrace those who call Her by name

Descending from Her throne in the heavens,

Sitting amongst us on the dusty earthly ground.

The Goddess' altar will become sacred only when

Her holy water is blessed by the touch of us all.

Because we have ignored Her true message,

Brother has turned against brother

Today, upon seeing the Goddess in Her full splendor,

You will realize that we are all children of the same Mother

And heaven, earth and the entire universe will erupt in awe,

Awoken by our invocation to the Holy Mother

Fearlessly chanted by all in unison.

Translated by: Udayan Chattopadhyay

At My Gaze No Longer Laughs the Rose

At my gaze no longer laughs the rose,

At the music of my words no longer blossoms forth the flowers

What is the use of going to the fair

With the garland of the withered smile?

Dose the dark night amaze her disheveled hair

Without looking at the moon for a while?

The southern wind brings the springs yet

But in the garden the nightingale sings no more.

No more does the wild flower in the forest

Dance at the sight of the moon

Something is lost, something is missing,

My heart feels so empty and old.

Ah me, at whose cruel touch

Has my heart grown so cold!

Translation: Kabir Chowdhury


Perhaps we shall meet,

Where the bending sky kisses

The green wilderness.

Yonder, in the village field

On the ridges or the desolate quay

Perhaps you shall come smiling;

And clasp my arms.

Your unveiled glances,

In that impervious blue

Bring the secret message

From the southern breeze.

In the chinks of wilderness;

Oh dear;

Your gentle kisses on my eyes

Remain enshrined.

In the horizon's golden hue.

Translation: Syed Mujibul Huq