Rati Saxena (India)

Rati Saxena (India)

Rati Saxena – Born in Udaipur, Rajasthan, India. She is a poet, writer, translator, Editor and vedic scholar, writes in Hindi and English. Presently lives in Trivandrum, Kerala, India. She is also festival Director of Kritya International poetry festival for 10 years.
• Biography – Rati Saxena has passed B.A. (Honours) Sanskrit, Maharani College, Rajasthan University,1972; M.A. SANSKRIT (Veda specialization), Rajasthan University, 1974. She has Ph.D in ‘Atharvavediya Padarth Yojana’, Vedic Sanskrit, Rajasthan University, 1978. And then again B.Ed – Sanskrit, Kerala University, 1987 and also M.A Hindi, Rajasthan University, 1994.
• Work experience – She was Lecturer in the Teachers Training College, Kerala Hindi Prachar Sabha, 1987–2003. She worked as Visiting professor in Shankaracharya Sanskrit University, Kaledy in dept of Vedic study from 2005 to 2010. She is a fulltime writer/ poet since 2011.
• Writings – Rati Saxena is writing in three directions. She has done research and explores the cultural, philosophical and historical aspects of ancient India through study of Vedas. She has published a number of papers on related subjects. She holds an eminent place in world poetry and writes in Hindi. Apart from these subjects, she writes travelogues and criticism too.
• Other activities – She is the editor of bilingual poetry web journal ‘www.kritya.in’ which is online since 2005. She is also the director of international Poetry festival-Kritya since 2005.

 

Countervision

Oh crazy eyes the right
Rebels against the left
Not in the name of sight
But for the fight itself
The left’s farsightedness
Ignores what time hath writ
Scanning instead remote
Advertising billboards
While the right stays fixed
On what’s in front of it
Their obstinate standoff
Feels distinctly weird
Folks hide minor skin defects
With utmost cleverness
But my right eye’s X-ray
Detects them right away
The left stares off into the distance
Toward the approaching footsteps
Of one who far from near
Might not even be there
So when I look out at a tree
The bird’s eye is all I see
And when I gaze at ocean waves
They appear as foam in space
I notice clearly and much more
Small things I never did before

Translated from the Hindi into English by Philip Nikolayev

 

Tegenzicht

Oh gekke ogen rechts
Rebelleren tegen links
Niet in naam van het zicht
Maar voor het gevecht zelf

De verziendheid van links
Negeert hoe laat het is
Scannen in de plaats op afstand gelegen
Reclameborden

Terwijl het rechteroog gefixeerd blijft
Op wat voor hem staat
Koppige afstand houdt
Voelt echt erg raar

Mensen verbergen kleine huidafwijkingen
Met uiterste slimheid
Maar de röntgenfoto van mijn rechteroog
Spoort ze meteen op

Linkeroog staart weg naar de verte
Naar de naderende voetstappen
Van iemand die ver van hier
Niet eens aanwezig zou zijn

Dus als ik naar een boom kijk
Is het vogeloog alles wat ik zie
En als ik naar oceaangolven kijk
Verschijnen ze als schuim in de ruimte

Kleine dingen die ik nooit eerder zag
Zie ik nu duidelijk en veel meer

Vertaald uit het Engels: Hannie Rouweler

 

1-

I do not like writing poetry on death and tragedy
especially when the stench of those mishaps hasn’t even gone away
but what can be a better gift than poetry
to bid farewell to a poet
especially when that poet keeps the capacity
to read through poems in languages from around the world
and after having picked up nuances of various languages
he’d settle down with his native tongue

that poet who meets the world with affection despite being cognizant of its truth
that poet who can laugh like a child after having culled many a thought

they say that when a tree is felled
all those beings, it was earth for, become homeless

when a poet in whom the world languages converge
whose wealth has the knowledge of the world
when he is cut off
everything that the world had amassed falls apart

Just like a tree is both the earth and the sky
a ruminative poet is a universe unto himself

What may I say to the thief who for a little money
crushed the moment in process of becoming history
what may I say to the fool who destroyed the treasure of
words in exchange of paltry coins

Had the poet survived, he would have taken the thief’s side
for how penniless the poor fellow must have been
or perhaps someone at his home was ill

I have nothing to say to the poet too
not even a goodbye
except that your casket must be left a little open
so that you can be embodied in the voice of your pupils
so that they may bring from beyond the voice of their ancestors

Poet! you can’t rest as yet
you still have a long way to go
no goodbye, your memory for us till date is the sky.

 

2-

Those days souls wandered as they liked
Sometimes they sat on shoulders of trees
Sometimes in clump of bushes
Sometimes in the mouth of ant
Sometimes in the coil of snake

But no idea why, they
didn’t like human odor
They had no issues with
fox, rabbits, pigs,
eyes of the owl
elephant trunk
the pig’s muzzle
they liked aplenty

Humans didn’t like
their wavy flights
their random blossoming
their crow-and-sparrow-talking

Humans imprisoned souls
in the absence of sleep
in a way that
animals who run away from jungles
came to be put behind hedges

Now souls are imprisoned in humans
blabbering, fighting, quarreling
crying wailing they have forgotten
to sway

Humans too imprisoned unknowingly
deaf, blind to the
the bellows of souls
are forgetting to hold their ground.

Translated in English by Shelly Bhoil

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