Two Poems by Swapnali Kalita

The House

The main post of the house squealed

As I seek, the sun shall revolve
As I seek, the wind shall drop
As I seek, the gardener shall come
To weed and trim the greenery

At the time of a yawn
The house pretended to be asleep

Flinging off the buzz of a house-fly
The bamboo battens of the house
Found a renewed vigour

Two fingers submerged in liquor
Kept a 'real-life story'

Dunked in it

The main post was laying aside
The floor-dust
To raise a squeal

Life and Death

'Kamala Kunwari, my sweetheart'
Are you listening...
 How much has the water-level risen!

Whatever the level of water be
I've a heavy hand on my shoulders 

Kamala's hut is humped
I wonder who shouted--
End yourself inside it!

At that very spot the storm tucked 
The folds of its dress firmly

In Kamala's finger was Lorakon's forefinger

Kamala won't die

Someone's green-hued hand
And an oft-heard unvoiced voice

For sounding upon the shoulders
They're special

As a matter of fact...
It's easy to die for oneself

To live for others

Click here to read the original Assamese poems.

[Translated by Krishna Dulal Barua]

Swapnali Kalita is a young Assamese poet based in Golaghat District, Assam. She has one collection of poems to her credit

Krishna Dulal Barua is a prominent translator and writer based in Nagaon, Assam. He received the Katha Award for translation in 2005.

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