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????? ?????? ?????? ??????? ??????? ????? ????

??? ??? ?????? ??????? ??????? ????,
??? ??? ?????????? ?????????; ?????? ????????’??
??? ???? ?? ????? ???????? ????
???? ????? ??? ??? ?? ???? ???? ????????-??????? ????,
????? ?????? ???? ????????; ????? ??, ??‘????? ????? ??????’
????? ????? ??? ??? ???? ??????? ????? ????

????? ????? ???? ??????? ?????? ???
????? ???; ????? ??????? ???? ???? ???? ???;
??????? ?? ?? ???? ???? ?????????? ??? ?????
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?? ???? ??? ???-?? ???-????? ? ?????? ?? ??????;
???? ???? ???????, ???????? ?????? ????? ????

banolatA shen

Long have I been a wanderer of this world,
Many a night,
My route lay across the sea of Ceylon somewhat winding to
The seas of Malaya
I was in the dim world of Bimbisar and Asok, and further off
In the mistiness of Vidarbha.
At moments when life was too much a sea of sounds,
I had Banalata Sen of Natore and her wisdom.

I remember her dark hair as night at Vidisha,
Her face an image of Srvasti as the pilot,
Undone in the blue millieu of the sea,
Never twice saw the earth of grass before him,
I have seen her, Banalata Sen of Natore.

When the day is done, no fall somewhere but of dews
Dips into the dusk; the smell of the sun is gone
Off the Kestrel’s wings. Light is your wit now,
Fanning fireflies that pitch the wide things around.
For Banalata Sen of Natore.

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???? ???? ???? ??????????? ????- ?? ??????

???? ????? ??- ???? ?? ?????? ??????? ????,
???? ????? ??? ??? ?? ????????? ???????? ????
??????? ???? ???? ????? ???? ? ?????? ??????
???? ?? ???? ??- ???????- ????? ????? ??? ???
??????? ???? ???? ????? ??????? ??? ???? ?????
???? ???? ??? ?????? ??? ??? ????? ????????
???????? ????? ???? ?????? ?? ???? ???? ????????

???? ?????? ???? ??????? ??????? ???????? ???????
???? ?????? ?? ???????????? ???????? ??????? ?????
???? ????? ??? ??????? ???? ?? ?????? ?????
?????? ???? ??? ???? ????? ?? ???? ????? ????
?????? ???; ?????? ??? ???????? ???????? ??????? ????
?????? ??? ??; ?????? ???? ???? ?????? ?????

I shall return once more

I shall return once more to the banks of the Dhansiri, to this Bengal
Perhaps not as a man, but in the guise of a white hawk or shalik
Perhaps as a dawn crow to this land of autumn’s new rice harvest
Floating on fog’s breast
I shall return one day to the shade of a jackfruit tree
Perhaps I shall be a duck –
some young lass’s, her crimson feet adorned with bells
I shall spend the day floating upon duck-weed scented waters
I shall return – loving this Bengal’s rivers, meadows and farms,
This gentle green land, washed with the waves of the Jalangi

Perhaps I shall descry buzzards soaring upon twilight’s breezes
Perhaps I shall hear the cry of a spotted owl from a Shimul branch
Perhaps a young child scatters puffed rice in some courtyard
Or a youth guides his dinghy with its torn white sails
upon the murky waters of the Rupasa;
Rubiscent clouds swim by, and perchance I shall see white herons
returning in the darkness to their nests;
This is where you shall find me – amongst them all.
Translated by Zunaid Kazi