A Song

By Govinda Das

Ghosha:  O’ Soul Govinda Gopala
                   You’ve set, O my Kind-Heart, the game of Maya

Pada :      A house was made with care and hope for the living
                  That house was blown away while it was storming
                  O Mind, make the house and fasten the door
                  Leaving your home the others’ you cry for 
                  Rafters are set in rows for the ridge two beams fixed
                  Twenty posts in all are firmly pitched
                  It is dark for walls raised on all four sides
                  Nine doors are fastened on all nine sides
                  At nine points are nine sentries on guard 
                  Within is sitting Hari, the all-cheering God
                 There is a woman that house to manage
                 One who stays away from her is a great sage
                 And there is a river that flows so fast
                 Across two birds Time and Timeless stay perched
                That pair of purple birds with the bluish-black wings
                 Have never ever come across as hatchlings
                 The swan has flown away leaving behind its feathers
                 On the sands of the Jamuna that body also weathers
                 Says this the slave Govinda again and again 
                 But the feet of the Guru no ways remain

Translated by Nirendra Nath Thakuria

Click here to read the original Assamese poem.

Govinda Das, an Assamese poet of the 18th century.

Nirendra Nath Thakuria, retired Associate Professor of English, is a translator.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *