Early version: December 31, 2014
This version: January 4, 2020

A veil of darkness still there was -- and yet the light of day Hridoypur was all abuzz -- with curiosities at play Drowned the river bank below -- in the sky one saw recline A lustrous moon in all its glow -- its eyes a pitiless shine Why offer her a ride at all -- whose face expresses frown Who posts a guard on every wall -- and keeps her shutters down? Can a tryst with her then make much sense -- now again this day At Hridoypur where curiosities -- are done with childish play?

Translation-cum-transcreation of a classic Bengali poem হৃদয়পুর (Hridoypur) by Shakti Chattopadhyay. The poem was published in his collection entitled ধর্মে আছো জিরাফেও আছ (“dhorme aachho giraffe-eo achho”, which literally translates to “you exist in religion as well as in the giraffe”) around the year 1977.

**For those unfamiliar with the Bengali language, the word “hridoy” means heart. The word “pur” means a locality. It’s a common suffix carried by a number of large as well as small towns and villages in India, such as Nagpur, Kanpur and so on. Hridoypur could mean a geographical territory, and indeed a locality by that name exists, but in the present context, the word “hridoy” (heart) lends to it a poetic connotation.

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  • Nathan Weaver  On January 2, 2015 at 11:05 pm

    Wow, that does read very nicely. I love the rhythm on it and wording. Very, very nice.

  • Nathan Weaver  On January 2, 2015 at 11:07 pm

    Reblogged this on Babylon Tales and commented:
    Dipankar’s work of translating these poems into English is much appreciated. This latest addition is completely fantastic. Love the rhythm and wording. Highly recommended reading, if you love reading poetry.

  • dipankardasgupta  On January 2, 2015 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you very much Nathan.

  • material  On May 19, 2015 at 11:13 pm

    You are so awesome! I don’t think I’ve truly read through something like this before.
    So wonderful to discover someone with original thoughts
    on this topic. Really.. many thanks for starting this up.
    This website is one thing that’s needed on the web, someone with a
    little originality!

  • siediti  On May 20, 2015 at 2:51 am

    I visit every day a few web pages and websites to read articles or reviews,
    but this website gives quality based writing.

  • purnachowdhury  On March 17, 2019 at 7:43 pm

    “Who posts a guard on every wall — and keeps her shutters down” is a lovely metaphor. Very visual and charged.

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