Sunday, October 5, 2008

At Such A Time As This: A Poem by Pankaj Chaturvedi


A translation of Pankaj Chaturvedi's Hindi poem Ek Aise Samay Mein

from his anthology Ek Sampoornata Ke Liye

At such a time as this

when people think that not a trace of the conscience remains

in responsible people,

I do not tire repeating

that if you visit injustice upon someone,

your soul too shall suffer a scratch.


At such a time as this

when hungry kites circle above

and a silent proclamation does the rounds for each hiding place

that anyone daring to dig his hand into it will be torn to pieces,

I wander through the streets as an easy prey,

seeking the truth of my speech –

that when there is drought all around,

the rainfall will depend on how our call pierces the cloud.


At such a time as this

when everything has been put on sale,

when in this all-sale

people cannot refrain from selling themselves

even if they can hide from one another’s looks,

when the race is not for ascension but for self-degradation,

the only happiness we may earn is to have emerged

with an unscathed soul

from the hell of impure desires.

(Translation by Rajesh Kumar Sharma)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i am a son of an infantryman.i was also infantry. i have 2 of my children,who have done 2 deployments each to america's "wars"
in these times
money talks
hands listen
our children
pay
for our
silence