Pakhare

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This is a delicate song that communicates nostalgia by presenting a series of remembered vignettes, each slightly abstracted from its specific memory. There is the colorful companionship of friends and relatives, the blushing brightness of the new-crescent moon, the fragrance of a transient flower perfuming the soil, the loving hand of a mother or a grandmother, the burning wicks keeping vigil at the altar, and the notes of a love song.

You can hear it here http://aathavanitli-gani.com/Song/Ashi_Pakhare_Yeti_Aanik or here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWM-n6IPgFc.

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Literal Translation

Thus birds arrive and leaving memories go
Of two days color and companionship, of two days relationships
The first-ever tender moon stood behind the tree
A little bit shy, brightening in the night of darkness
On blooming the flower said I have on death balanced my heart (alt measured death with my heart)
There wasn’t hereafter but forever scented became earth
The lone hand slowly shook, on the back lovingly moved
In the lamp in the god-house still burn wicks
Where, whose happened meetings, one song budded on lips
The story of those united hearts notes even now sing

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Poetic Translation

On wings they come
   On wings depart
     And leave their memories

Two days of joy
   With friends and kin
     Two days of reveries

The tender moon
   Behind the tree
     Brightening the night

The flower in bloom
   Measuring death
     Forever scents the site

A shaking hand
   Unsure at first
     Closely held with love

Candles burning
   In the sanctum
     Towards God above

Unseen, unknown
   Our paths have crossed
     A song is sung unheard

The ballad of hearts
   Joined in love
     Is sung by bird and bird

On wings they come
   On wings depart
     And leave their memories

Two days of joy
   With friends and kin
     Two days of reveries

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22 thoughts on “Pakhare

  1. Very nice poem Akash. Not quite able to place it, but it leaves some kind of a heavy feeling or regret in me for every line I read. But i guess that’s what poems do… dig out deep hidden emotions long buried in the sands of time…
    Keep writing!

  2. Thanks, Milind. Yes, the original is nostalgic and on the sad side (isn’t that always the case with nostalgia), which I have attempted to reproduce. The “Unseen” line, reflecting “kuthe, kunachya” gives the incompleteness that haunts.

  3. Now the song form mentioned in the previous comment has a melody you can play and hear.

  4. I like your poetic translation. The poetic theme sad or whatever need not bother one. Poetry is poetry and the subject matter need not really define it. What is important is, whether the true inspiration has come out or not—here it has.

    In the second line “depart” sounds a bit heavy, and incongruent. Maybe “On wings they leave” could be a better choice though “leave” appears again in the next line. How about

    On wings they come
    On wings they leave,
    Unfading memories

    or something like this?

  5. I suppose it could be as simple as “On wings they come // On wings they go …”, though it is a tad ordinary. Perhaps the “depart” can stay in the poem form along with “Two days”, and the song form can have “go” and “A day”.

  6. To my ear, “go and” doesn’t work well – needs a consonant in between. One could lose the repeating symmetry of “On wings” to have something like this which sings well:

    On wings they come
        And fly away
            And leave their memories

    A day of joy
        With friends and kin
            A day of reveries

    All this said, I’d still prefer the original “On wings depart” and the new “A day”.

  7. On wings they come
    And fly away
    And leave their memories

    —it got diluted.

    “part” “depart” are harsh and wouldn’t go with the softness that is there otherwise in the lyric.

  8. I’ll have to call it for “depart”. Despite the harder consonants, the open vowel sound of “A” in “depart” after the closed sound “a” of “come”, the short-long quantity of the iamb in “depart”, and prevention of the repetition of “they”,a principal cause of ordinariness of that formulation, makes up my mind, yielding:

    On wings they come
        On wings depart
            And leave their memories

    A day of joy
        With friends and kin
            A day of reveries

    And, it sings well (follow the link given a few comments earlier to hear two renderings).

  9. Sorry I don’t quite see the relevance of this Savitri-line which is, in spite of its lyricism, so dense and occult that the beautiful smiling things of life here defy the harshness and cruelty of time and death.

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