Two Poems by Meghali Phukan

The Words

The words we love
Put on a thick jacket 
Of terror, suspicion and fear.
The words beautifully adorned
In the lips of the dear ones 
Entered a stone labyrinth. 
Buds all agog to bloom
Froze in worries congealed in blood.
Whose evil days have swallowed embroidered breath?
The flutes in the fingers
Of many a gypsy poet have trembled
And each heart burns in a willow of the wisp.
And a gust of wind weeps.
The man sleeps clotted all over.
A lantern of love is endangered
In a sea of boiling blood of the akshauhini soldiers
And the tears are vermillion red.
In the crisis of the earth
The uprooted tree gives a heart rending cry.
The words of prayer are merciless 
And as black as the dark night.

Wearing a spotted frock
She stood before the mirror 
And asked her mother
When shall I grow up?

Mother said, keep quiet
Or else
Wind shall hear.

What will happen when wind hears?
Wind will tell the sunflowers
The sunflowers will tell rain
Rain will tell it to the rivers
And the rivers will tell all oceans.

Don't look at the mirror 
My dear littlun 
The ocean will come rolling over.

Translated by Ananda Bormudoi

Click here to read the original Assamese poems.

Meghali Pukan is a contemporary Assamese poet and writer based in Doomdooma, Tinsukia, Assam. She has two collections of poems to her credit.

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