পর্যটন


অনেক দূরে
এলাম ঘুরে
ভাবনাপুরে …

চুরি


ফাগুনের গহিন এই রাত্রে
সরিষার তেল মাখি গাত্রে
সিঁধ কাটি ঘুরি ঘুরি
চল্‌ করি মন চুরি
আঁধারেতে ফাগুনের এ রাত্রে।

খোঁজ


চল রে গহন এ রাত্রে
খুঁজি আপ্রাণে
জীবনের মানে
হাতড়ে হাতড়ে হাতড়ে ।

16 Mandeville Gardens: Sahitya Samsad Publishers

16mg

This is the third edition of a book I wrote about my recollections of South Point School when the school itself was a baby. I passed out of the school in 1959, which was a long time ago. However, memories of the school linger still and vividly so in my mind. It was a fairy tale experience for us. Mr Satikanta Guha, the founder of the school, was a most unusual educationist for the times when he started the school. Most of the students couldn’t quite distinguish the school from a toy they had been gifted to merrily play with. We had very unusual teachers. The most remembered among them was Utpal Dutt, the famous stage and later screen actor. He taught us grammar simultaneously with Shakespeare’s plays. He made us act too and, on the playground, he was a wicket keeper for whatever cricket team we had those days. Quite apart from him, we were taught by N. Viswanathan, Uma Sehanobis (who later founded the Patha Bhavan School) and many other precious teachers who have defied to some extent the rules of mortality. We didn’t know exactly when we were studying and when we were playing and this was a perfect example of the proverb “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”, except that we had Jills for classmates too. In spite of all the play we were involved in, Mr. Satikanta Guha ensured that a student secured the sixth position in the Madhyamik Examination (then called the School Final Examination) in 1959. Rank holding never ceased since then and, as many are aware, the school found a place in the Guiness Book of Records (1984-92). More recently, Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee, an alumnus of the school, was awarded the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel. South Point School has risen very high, but it had cute beginnings and this book tries to revive that fascinating past, from 1954 to 1959. I wish to thank the present school authorities, especially Mr. Krishna Damani and Ms. Dalbir Kaur Chadda, for giving me access to the photographs of the old school from their library archives. These photographs as well as stories missed out by earlier editions have been included in the present version of the book.

The book should soon be available on line. Currently, it can be ordered at Ideal Book Stall in Gariahat. Phone Number: 033 2464 2961. It should be easily available in the College Street area as well.

এক নং

chomke dekhi

ভাবছি


লাগলে তোমার ভাল —
বাক্সে পুরে, রাংতা মুড়ে,
রঙিন ফিতেয় বেঁধে,
আকাশ থেকে কুড়িয়ে এনে
কয়েক মুঠো আলো —
ভাবছি তোমায় পাঠিয়ে দেব,
লাগলে তোমার ভাল —

Exchange

cherry
 
 
desolate2

 In its stead then, you receive
          A silent pool wrought just for you
          A looking glass clear and painted blue
               Water, light-filled, glows --
          Image of a branch, flowers bowed 
          The fluttering sail of a violet cloud
                  A fulfilled heart assures --
An inward eye can all perceive. 


In its stead then, you receive
         Musings mundane, void and bare
         Dusty feet marked paths that stare
               Winds sucked dry of tears --
         A distant familiar voice might call
         During a midday, bereft of all
               No one turns and hears.
These too did you have to leave!                  

_______
Translation-cum-transcreation of a classic Bengali poem বিনিময় (binimoy, meaning exchange) by Amiya Chakravarty. The poem was published around 1953 in a collection of Chakravarty’s poems entitled পারাপার (parapar, meaning ferrying across). I take this opportunity to thank my wonderful friend Surja Sankar Ray for his interpretation of the poem as well as his advice on the many drafts preceding what has been posted.

Hridoypur** (Revised)

Early version: December 31, 2014
This version: January 5, 2020

A veil of darkness still there was -- and yet the light of day Hridoypur was all abuzz -- with perplexities 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 perplexities -- 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, Mathurapur 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.

শীতু-ভিতু


শীতু, শীতু, শীতু রে
ভিতু, আমি ভিতু রে
দিবারাত ভয়ে তোর
ভারি কম্পিতু রে।

Flaubert


Flaubert studied law
Which certainly was his flaw
Thank Lord though he was clever
Which is why he never
Turned into lauyert
And simply remained Flaubert.