It could be a point to ponder: Does translation afford a translator the same pleasure as what the author would have derived while creating the original work? Well, this could be a question like, do I see the same colours as others see? The answer could be anything: both yes and no. I have been doing both for my blog--writing and translating. And I have really enjoyed translating stuffs that are originally enjoyable. Here are the two poems of the famous Oriya poet Smt Rasmi Raul. She has to her credit some thirty works, in almost all genres beginning from poetry to short stories to novels, and they are the works of substance, liked by both her readers and critics. Simplicity, lucidity, poignancy, nostalgia are the hallmarks of her work. She has got Sahitya Academy Award in Oriya literature for her magnum opus: "Eithi Gote Gan Thila", There was a Village Here. During her recent visit to Shimla I enjoyed talking and listening to her, and on my request she had given me some of her poems to translate. Just to test if I can do that, let me begin here.
Original Odiya poems by Rasmi Raul,
[ Published in Sagarika, October 1992 ]
I - City
An expression of just two syllables
Softness squeezed out,
A voice so very raucous,
dry and hoarse
It could be a raga malkosh,
its beauty banished
Or could be dhrupad,
its tune jarred
A locality that teems with
City! It’s thy name.
II - Village
A word so tuneful, so very endearing
It’s raga thoomri or it could be a ghazal
A soulful lilt wafting from distance
Mellifluous, moist with languor.
Enriched by the coolness of shady trees
Enchanted by the charm of the soil
Like those incense sticks
Its aroma so very fragrant
It’s short and sweet; it’s thy name.
श ह र
तिन अक्षरों से बना यह महज़ एक शब्द
खूबसूरती से दूर, शुष्क, कर्कश
किसी मालकोस या ध्रुपद का रियाज़
जिससे कोमलता बिछुड़ गई है
इंसानी रिश्तों से बेखबर
अस्नेही मानवों का जमावड़ा
शहर! इसका नाम है ।
एक सुरीला शब्द, कितना मनभावन !
जैसा कि ठुमरी या ग़ज़ल का तान
अथवा दूर-दूर से बहता आया
मार्मिक संगीत का मूर्च्छना
सौम्य-सुस्ती से भीगा मनोहर-सा अहसास ।
पेड़ की छाँव से, मिटटी की कशिश से
अगरबत्ती की महक जैसी
छोटा-सा नाम- गाँव ।
A N Nanda