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PASSED THE TATTOOED NIGHT WIDE AWAKE

I passed the tattooed night wide awake
looking at myself in the mirror this morning I saw
my face was a piece of ice
a feeling of coldness ran through me

As if I awoke all of a sudden
from a dream that writhed in pain
wanting to write something
I could not find my right hand
my hand on which mushrooms grew

I have not found the words
words I have been hearing night and day
in fire under water from palm leaves
on eternity’s darkling roads
wearing a necklace of seven strings
amber-coloured low sounds of barren love
now hang from your neck
all over the bodies of
those who are gone who are coming who are ready to go

Hesitantly I look into your eyes
I go on till turning into a western star
I burn in the air to ash
turning into ash I come down on your face

I have to be wide awake tonight as well
perhaps for this night
I have been waiting all these days
carrying my heart in a sacred copper vessel

In your presence I try to hide my face
in the midst of rain stones trees children
I am now getting submerged
in the mossy nights’ deep water

Looking at my face in the mirror tomorrow morning
perhaps I shall see
from the riverbank an old man
is angling all alone
looking at the evening torn into strips

The fish jumping on the water seem to be
jumping onto the bank
a kingfisher would swoop down
on the edge of the water

NILMANI PHOOKAN

Translated by Dibya R. S. Khataniar
(zie ook link om meer te lezen van deze dichter)
foto: Bernard Faucon

http://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/bitstream/10603/99247/9/09_chapter%204.pdf

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