Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Prometheus


 Cover your heaven, Zeus,
And like a boy
Beheading thistles
Practice on oaks and mountain peaks-
Still you must leave
My earth intact
And my small hovel, which you did not build,
And this my hearth
Whose glowing heat
You envy me.
I know of nothing more wretched
Under the sun than you gods!
Meagerly you nourish
Your majesty
on dues of sacrifice
And breadth of prayer
And would suffer want
But for children and beggars,
poor hopeful fools.

Once too, a child,
Not knowing where to turn,
I raised bewildered eyes
Up to the sun, as if above there were
An ear to hear my complaint,
A heart like mine
To take pity on the oppressed.

Who helped me
Against the Titans' arrogance?
Who rescued me from death,
from slavery?
Did not my holy and glowing heart,
Unaided, accomplish all?
And did it not, young and good,
Cheated, glow thankfulness
For its safety to him, to the sleeper above?

I pay homage to you? For what?
Have you ever assuaged
the frightened man's tears?
Was it not omnipotent time
That forged me into manhood,
And eternal fate,
My masters and yours?
Or did you think perhaps
That I should hate this life,
Flee into deserts
Because not all
the blossoms of dream grew ripe?

Here I sit, forming men
in my image,
A race to resemble me:
To suffer, to weep,
To enjoy, to be glad-
and never to heed you,
like me!

Goethe
1773

Monday, December 23, 2013

यह एक दिन

कई बार
आशाओं से निरंतर मुठभेड़ भी
ले जाती है आत्महत्या तक।
आज की रात
ड्राई लीव्स - दिएनेका
यही सुनना है मुझे येसेनिन के मुँह से
और उसके फैसले को गलत बताने के लिए ज़रूरी नहीं है मायकोव्स्की का होना।
वह समय था जब
अनसुलझे थे जीवन और कविता के
कई सवाल
जिन्हें हमारे समय में
हल किया जाना है
या फिर आने वाले समय में।
 आज का कवि है
इस विश्वास की हिफाजत के लिए  
और ज़रूरी कि
इस खातिर बचा कर रखे जाएँ
कुछ यादगार उदास दिन,
कुछ परछाईयाँ, कुछ धब्बे, कुछ असफल और कुछ कमजोर कवितायें,
कुछ टूटे रिश्तों और कुछ लौटे साथियों की यादें,
कुछ पुराने नक़्शे,
कुछ चिट्ठियाँ, कुछ रिक्तताएँ
और कुछ झूठी गवाहियां भी
ताकि उजले दिनों में
वहाँ तक लाने वाले रास्तों की
शिनाख्त की जा सके।

(अंतिम हिस्सा)

कात्यायनी 

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