Poem of the week: Week Eight.

The last one in the theme ‘Love and Marriage’. There is a dearth of good poems on the subject of marriage while tons on love, I have found. One of my favourite love poet is Pablo Neruda. And this one is from a collection titled Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair, which I picked up from Kitab Khana.

Every Day You Play
– Pablo Neruda

Every day you play with the light of the universe.
Subtle visitor, you arrive in the flower and the water.
You are more than this white head that I hold tightly
as a cluster of fruit, every day, between my hands.

You are like nobody since I love you.
Let me spread you out among yellow garlands.
Who writes your name in letters of smoke among
the stars of the south?
Oh let me remember you as you were before you existed.

Suddenly the wind howls and bangs at my shut window.
The sky is a net crammed with shadowy fish.
Here all the winds let go sooner or later, all of them.
The rain takes off her clothes.

The birds go by, fleeing.
The wind. The wind.
I can contend only against the power of men.
The storm whirls dark leaves
and turns loose all the boats that were moored last
to the sky.

You are here. Oh, you do not run away.
You will answer me to the last cry.
Cling to me as though you were frightened.
Even so, at one time a strange shadow ran through
your eyes.

Now, now too, you bring me honeysuckle,
and even your breasts smell of it.
While the sad wind goes slaughtering butterflies
I love you, and my happiness bites the plum of your mouth.

How you  must have suffered getting accustomed to
My savage soul, my name that sends them
all running.
So many times we have seen the morning star burn,
kissing your eyes,
and over our heads the grey light unwind in turning
My words rained over you, stroking you.
A long time I have loved the sunned mother-of-pearl
of your body.
I go so far as to think that you own the universe.
I will bring you happy flowers from the mountains,
dark hazels, and rustic baskets of kisses.

I want
to do with you what spring does with the cherry

Trust Neruda to make even the most unromantic person blush!

Poem of the week: Week Seven.

A poetry theme to do with love would be incomplete without a poem from Tagore. My only problem was finding a happy love poem from the bilingual collection Songs of Tagore, which was a gift too. If not happy-happy, the following poem best describes the feeling of love. It’s week three of the theme ‘Love and Marriage’.

Baajilo kaahaar beenaa modhur shworey
Aamaar nibhrito nobo jeebon- ‘porey.
Prabhat komolo shomo phutilo hriday momo
Kaar duti nirupom choron-torey.
Jegey uthey shob shobhaa, shob maadhuri,
Polokey polokey hiyaa pulokey poori.
Kothaa hotey shomeeron aaney nobo jaagoron,
poraaner aaboron mochon korey.
Laagey bukey shukhey dukhey koto jey byaathaa,
Kamoney bujhaaye kobo naa jaani kothaa.
Aamaaro baashonaa aaji tribhuboney uthey baaji,
kaanpey nodi bonoraaji bedonaabhorey.

I Know not whose lyre
plays a sweet symphony
in this secret dawn of my life;
my heart like a lotus in the morn
pens its thousand petals
beneath those peerless feet.

To the strains of that music,
beauty awakes;
her heart filling with bliss
from moment to moment.

From where do the winds of spring
bring this awakening,
rendering the veils of the soul?

I find no words to describe
this painful strife
of agony and joy in my breast!

My desire rings echoing
through the three worlds,
and the river and the woodlands
tremble with the poignancy of my pain.


I don’t speak Bangla but reading the poem in the original is always a delight!