Not What the Words...
by Mohan Rana
I dry out words in the rain
until one day all that is left
is whiteness. The verandah dazzles
with emptiness, so I take them back in.
These are the fallen, scattered shards of life.
I pick them up and fit them all together
to make a pattern whose meaning can't be made out,
though in autumn
the leaves still fall in their season.
A rainy cloud hits
the edges of the garden,
and a bridge that has held apart
comes in as if to speak.
As a rule few people travel this road.
It features on no map,
this road that leads nowhere.
But when, out for a walk, I pick something up,
the track appears: just as, when a leaf falls,
a seed somewhere is born out of that falling.
From Dhoop ke Andhere men, In the Darkness of the Sun
The literal translation of this poem was made by Lucy Rosenstein
The final translated version of the poem is by Bernard O'Donoghue
© Poetry Translation Centre 2004-2013