In search of Peace

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Give me peace, give me freedom—
To craft a golden Assam.
Give me pastures, give me harvests—
Forever let us blossom.

You have tried guns and bullets and bloodsheds,
You have made innocent children cry in their beds;
Enough of this ghastly dance of death.
What will you reap?
What will you give?
Say…

Give me peace, give me freedom—
To craft a golden Assam.
Give me pastures, give me harvests—
Forever let us blossom.

The path to truth is never too late;
The heart of truth is always novel;
Too vast is the love-meadows.
The path to realization is never too late;
The heart of realization is always novel;
From ideas erupt volcanoes.

You have tried guns and bullets and bloodsheds,
You’ve made innocent children cry in their beds;
Enough of this ghastly dance of death.
What will you reap?
What will you give?
Say…

Give me peace, give me freedom—
To craft a golden Assam.
Give me pastures, give me harvests—
Forever let us blossom.

To speak the truth, we have the right;
To seek and pursue, we have the right.
What will we earn from these streams of bloodsheds?
To create a dawn new, we have the right;
To seek and pursue, we have the right;
Why will we act blind when we have our eyes perfect?

You have tried guns and bullets and bloodsheds,
You’ve made innocent children cry in their beds;
Enough of this ghastly dance of death.
What will you reap?
What will you give?
Say…

Give me peace, give me freedom—
To craft a golden Assam.
Give me pastures, give me harvests—
Forever let us blossom.

~KMnO4

PS: It is my attempt to translate the song ‘Xanti Diya’. I tried my best. Forgive me if I could not do justice to the song _/\_

Cure

An act of cowardice,
As the world sees it.
I lock my door,
And smoke my weed.

I need an escape-
A momentary relief;
I’ve had enough;
Enough of this shit!

For some moments,
Let me be high;
Let me rule the word,
Let me sail the tide.

Don’t teach me
What to do.
Don’t preach me
I don’t need you.

I know it all
What to do.
You don’t know
What I’ve gone through.

Don’t be afraid
I’ll pull back.
I know my line;
I’ll make my walk.

I’ll shine again,
You be sure.
I just need a break;
I just need a cure.

~KMnO4

For Once|| Eibeli Muk

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For once, keep me in your heart.
For once, wrap in in your arms.
For once, in your shroud,
And in a blink every moment shall pass;
Every night shall.
For once, let the world see,
With feelings, light a lamp for me.
 
Thinking about you,
I spend my life.
For anyone else,
I have no time.
From the land of the moons, you bring me news;
I need nothing else, nothing else but you.
 
For once, don’t keep me waiting.
With love, please overwhelm me.
 
Every night, you come in my dreams,
And give me a kiss,
Pouring the sweet aroma of yours,
Leaving me in a state of bliss.
I feel like flying; how can I hold it?
For once, flying like an unleashed bird.
 
For once, let the stars see,
A night of union and intimacy.
For once…
And in a blink every moment shall pass;
Every night shall.
For once, let the world see,
With feelings, light a lamp for me.
 
~KMnO4
 
 PS: It is my attempt to translate the song ‘Eibeli Muk’. I tried my best. Forgive me if I could not do justice to the song _/\_ .

Westerly Winds || Mon Mur

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The tender westerly winds…
 
My heart flies far away;
As if it is losing something it had someday.
My heart flies far away;
As if it is losing something it had someday.
The tender westerly winds;
The soothing shade of the trees.
 
The blooming daisies spread their petals,
And murmur some words into the ears.
The flying flock of birds,
Amidst the light and darkness of the skies.
Pouring the pang of their hearts,
Will they ever be able to say?
Will they ever be able to say what it looks for?
 
Why do I have this strong urge today?
My heart looks for a way.
The tranquilizing breeze of your scarf;
Today, it’s a sad lonely dusk.
Oh, crazy westerly winds,
Fly me and take me to the hills.
The tender westerly winds;
The soothing shade of the trees.
 
My heart flies far away;
As if it is losing something it had someday.
My heart flies far away;
As if it is losing something it had someday.
The tender westerly winds;
The soothing shade of the trees.
 
The tender westerly winds;
The soothing shade of the trees.
The tender westerly winds;
The endless stream of my dreams.
 
~KMnO4
 PS: It is my attempt to translate the song ‘Mon Mur/Phagunore Posuwa Baa’. I tried my best. Forgive me if I could not do justice to the song _/\_ .

As you are

Stabbed by all…
Alienated,
Wounded.
I can take it all…
I will stand straight;
I won’t lose my ground.
People love fake people.
Sorry, I can’t be one.
Sorry, I’ll die alone.
Sometimes I feel too weak,
It hurts to be a loner.
Sometimes I wonder,
Is something wrong with me
Or am I too good for this world?
No one remembers your birthday…
Not a single person.
But then, some things can’t be changed.
You’ll be as you are.

~KMnO4

Memories

Memories…
Losing out slowly.
One by one.
At each place, we leave a part of ourselves.
Memories…
Linked with things we had,
Places we had been to,
People we met,
Stupid things we did.
Memories…
Flow back again when accidentally we bump into the familiar things we once had,
Making new memories.
Memories…
Never to come again.
With each place we leave, we leave a part of ourselves.

~KMnO4

Jhumoor

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Who has tied up your hair in this untidy bun? X2
Who has cast an evil eye on you? X2
Oh Vrindavan,
Oh dear,
Who has cast an evil eye on you?
Oh Vrindavan, you mesmerize.
 
I have planted some paddy in my little field X2
But the wild birds eat them, killing them all,
Oh brother, chase them away,
With this beautiful charm strung around your neck X2
Tranana na re na re tranana na re na
Oh my my,
Oh brother, chase them away,
With this beautiful charm strung around your neck X2
 
With what string do I tie this yellow wildflower around your neck? X2
Which string, which string do I tie it with?
The red lotus starts to shine slowly,
With a silver chain I want to tie the yellow wildflowers to your neck X2
Which string, which string do I tie it with?
The red lotus starts to shine slowly.
 
 
~Animesh Das
 
 
PS: Sorry Animesh I uploaded your translation without your permission as many had requested me to translate it and I saw yours which was pretty well done. So there was no point for me to do it again.

Truth?

What is truth?
The rays of the sun;
The reflections of the moon;
The cravings of a hungry child;
Or the lust of youth?
 
What is truth?
The wisdom of a sage;
The furore of a goon;
The want of the wildlings;
Or the cozy bedroom of you?
 
What is truth?
A moment of glory;
A period of ruth;
The fight of a hero;
Or the babblings of a loon?
 
What is truth?
An ocean of rain;
A drop of dew;
Happiness of a lifetime;
Or just a moment with you?
 
~KMnO4
 
 

Silence

Silence.
Something is eating me up from within.
A burning heart and a glass of whiskey.
A stink that has now become a part of me.
A stupid chase into a labyrinth.
Silence!
I’m falling into a mystic sleep.

~KMnO4

Nightmare

I feel naked.
Completely stripped.
Every bit of cloth ripped off.
Morbidly lying on my knees;
Head bent down,
Looking to the ground,
Hands hanging across my shoulders,
Feebly trying to cover my privates,
Unsuccessfully trying to save my modesty,
If there is any left.

I know a crowd has gathered around me;
Every single eye prying upon my nakedness,
With disgust,
And shame.
I hear them murmur something
Into each other’s ears.
They must be speaking of me-
Discussing what a sickening pest I had been;
The filth that I had been.

I slowly raise my head,
Lifting my view
To take a peek into the crowd,
With a sense of fear and guilt
Of God knows what,
And a jitter of nervousness;
What a thing of pity to be!
I’m terrorized.
Eyes pointing at me.
Familiar eyes.
Mocking at my state.
Familiar smile.
Faces with scorn.
Faces all mine.
I’m naked.

~KMnO4

Someday

Someday I’ll have to learn;
Someday I’ll have to grow.
There won’t always be someone to walk by me;
Someday I’ll have to know.
 
Someday I’ll have to pass;
Someday I’ll have to slow.
I can’t be holding on to something forever;
Someday I’ll have to let it go.
 
Someday I’ll have to strive;
Someday I’ll have to force.
There won’t always be someone to hold my hand;
Someday I’ll have to flow.
 
Someday I’ll have to shine;
Someday I’ll have to glow.
There still is a spark somewhere in me;
Someday I’ll have to show.
 
~KMnO4
 

Fear

What I want is not you;
I can live without you
For a million years,
If only I am sure,
I reside in your heart,
I can die with a smile.

What I fear is losing you;
Those moments we shared
That once made me smile,
Can now make me cry.
The thought of you leaving me,
And us becoming strangers,
Can make me die.

But won’t it be a shame?
Coz you know I care for you,
And I think you care for me too.
We’ll have no one to blame
When everything gets over,
And we take our last breath
Away from each other,
Missing each other,
But no way to reach.
Can we endure that pain?

~KMnO4

Dead Star

I am the dead star,
Collapsing into myself.
Cringing in a corner,
I’m lost in the universe.

Sunk into darkness,
Out of everyone’s sight,
All I cling to is my past-
My gone glory and might.

I’m cold now,
All the fire I once had has died out.
I can emit no light-
Something to look about.

The constellation I once shared,
Has forsaken me long;
Stories of joy and anecdotes of suffering,
Is all what I carry along.

~KMnO4

Ghosts

The hills rock to sleep in a sedating dream;
The night puts silent all the pains and the screams.

A voice keeps echoing pushing the walls;
The hound I shelter is daunting and tall.

My heart’s still dark like the simmering moon;
I can’t walk over with my stumbling view.

The sins I’ve done have stained my hands;
I wash and wash over but the blood never fades.

I weep for a loss like the pouring sky;
I weep for something I don’t know why?

I keep rolling on the bed without sleep;
I wake from a nightmare, scary and deep.

I try to run, but my past haunts me;
I hide my fear and the ghosts I see.

~KMnO4

Hate but Love

Let’s not fight for so long,
that we forget the reason of the fight,
and only remember
that we have got to fight.
 
 
Let’s end this awkward silence,
and take a step,
both of us,
and rewind the tape.
 
 
Let’s be like before—
each irritate the other
doing stupid things,
that we hate but we love.
 
~KMnO4

Know your Mother-Tongue ||Assamese

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চিৰ চেনেহী মোৰ ভাষা জননী
(Always dear my mother tongue)
 
Few years back, when I was in school—to be precise, in Class 10— I had friends who said they could not read the headlines in Assamese newspapers. I felt bad hearing that. They were Assamese children, who studied from childhood in English Medium schools. But just because they studied in English Medium schools that doesn’t mean, they should not be knowing how to read or write in their own mother tongue— I felt.
 
Few years down the line, when I went to Mumbai for my job, and used to attend cultural gatherings in the Assam Bhawan present there, I’d see kids of affluent Assamese professionals working in Mumbai speaking amongst themselves in Hindi. I would be filled with rage. If we do not speak in Assamese, the outsiders are not going to speak in Assamese— I would think.
 
After spending two years in Mumbai, I started talking with my Assamese friends in Hindi. We cannot escape the influence of the environment. I realized.
 
But accepting someone else’s language doesn’t mean we will forget our own language.
 
I recall a few lines from the short story ‘The Last Lesson’ by Alphonse Daudet. (He says about his mother tongue French. The Germans had occupied their land and, only German was to be taught in their schools from the next day. It was the last lesson in French.) He said-
“…we must always retain it among ourselves, and never forget it, because when a people falls into servitude, “so long as it clings to its language, it is as if it held the key to its prison.””
 
Yes, as long as we hold to our language, no one can enslave us.
 
I’d like to cite a few lines from one of the songs of Dr. Bhupen Hazarika-
 
“আনৰে লগতে অসমীয়া অসমতে
যদিহে নেবাচে বাৰু ক’তনো বাচিব
মোৰ আইক ভাল পাওঁ বুলিলে
আনৰ আইক জানো ঘিণ কৰাটো বুজাব…”
(ড. ভূপেন হাজৰিকা)
 
Which means, if the Assamese language doesn’t survive even in Assam, where else will it survive? And loving ones mother doesn’t mean hating others’.
 
Assam is the land of Sankardev. It is the land of Jyotiprasad Agarwala, Lakshminath Bezbaruah. Assam is the land of Lachit. Assam has a rich heritage, a rich culture and traditions. It has a rich language. We should never forget it.
 
Hundreds of people have laid down their lives for the Bhasa Andolon. We should not let them down. We should teach our future generations to respect and learn their mother tongue. This is our moral obligation.
 
I’d like to end with a few lines of the anthem of the Assam Shahitya Shabha-
 
চিৰ চেনেহী মোৰ ভাষা জননী
ধন্যে পুন্যে হৃত পাৱনী,
প্ৰকৃতি পৰশ ৰসে অমল কমল
চঞ্চল হৃদি জলে ঢালে পৰিমল
কোমল চম্পাৰ কলি
ফুৰে ঢৌৱে ঢৌৱে তুলি
ৰিণিকি ৰিণিকি কোনে তোলে ৰাগিণী
 
সংসাৰ গুৰুভাৰে অৱশ পৰাণ
হিয়াত বিলীন হয় হিয়াভৰা গান
কাৰ নিচুকনি শুনা
শুনি বানী ব্যথা পমা
চকুতে চকুৰ নীৰে লয় জিৰণি
 
জীৱনে মৰণে ৰণে লহৰী সুধাৰ
ৰসনা শিতানে বহি সিঁচা শতধাৰ
হে’ মোৰ মধুৰাননা মাগিছোঁ মাধুৰী কণা
দিয়া দিয়া দিয়া আই মধু ভাষিণী
 
Always dear my mother tongue
 
‘Bajok doba, bajok xhongkho, bajok mridong khol, Oxom akou unnoti pothot, Jai Aii Axom bol”.
~KMnO4
 
 

Autumn Nights

You come only to go,
Like the soothing autumn nights.
You come and bring momentary pleasures,
As if healing the dying trees,
With a new hope of death or life, you come;
And shed the sickness and decaying life,
Fooling people who know the truth.
Still luring them into believing the lie;
You lie you lie.
And all through your lies I could see the truth;
It is your art that I liked.
I loved to believe in your lies,
And make you happy thinking your deceived me.
You come only to go,
And leave me in this never ending winter.
 
~KMnO4

Strangers

Stupid memories bug me much;
Do you ever visit the memory lane?
I can’t save them how hard I clutch;
Do you ever feel the pain?

You walked out of the door,
I knew you’re never to come back.
I kept looking you through the window,
In the rain till you disappeared.

Once so close I felt your soul;
Once so blessed with your love.
What went wrong that can’t be fixed?
What happened we’re strangers now?

Today I feel so far away;
Much farther than where I stay.
I feel broken like a toy of clay;
I just wish I had a way.

~KMnO4

Scripts in Blood

And I burn,
All through the night—
A never ending fire.
And I cry,
My tears make me blind—
Standing on my pyre.

All I try,
All I want.
All I hope;
It’s all gone bad.

And I fall;
Fall on my knees,
Begging you please.
And I wrap;
Wrap my arms,
Across the memories.

All I try,
All I love.
All I want,
Is all I lost.

And I see,
I see nothing;
Why you stranded me!
And I bleed,
Scripts I ink,
Drowning in the sea.

All I get,
All I strive.
All I bet,
Is all my life.

And I feel,
I feel too weak—
You were my energy.
And I miss,
Miss you every minute,
Miss you till eternity.

All I beg,
All I plead.
None but you,
Is all I need.

~KMnO4

Firefly

My heart still feels the pain;
How I wish you could see!
How you’ve left me in shatters;
How you’ve wasted me.

I saw your face today,
And my heart felt a twinge;
I thought I was over you,
But you know you’re hard to leave.

I’m stuck in this infinite loop,
And round and round I go.
Why a firefly burns all night,
You’ll never know.

You’re a master of cruelty,
Or a slave of your fears?
I’ll get to know someday,
When the smog clears.

I don’t know if this is right.
What if this is wrong?
All I want is you by my side,
And I’ll love you along.

~KMnO4