জন্মকথা/Jonmokatha/The story of my birth

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জন্মকথা

খোকা মাকে শুধায় ডেকে–
“এলেম আমি কোথা থেকে,
কোন্খানে তুই কুড়িয়ে পেলি আমারে।’
মা শুনে কয় হেসে কেঁদে
খোকারে তার বুক বেঁধে–
“ইচ্ছা হয়ে ছিলি মনের মাঝারে।
ছিলি আমার পুতুল-খেলায়,
প্রভাতে শিবপূজার বেলায়
তোরে আমি ভেঙেছি আর গড়েছি।
তুই আমার ঠাকুরের সনে
ছিলি পূজার সিংহাসনে,
তাঁরি পূজায় তোমার পূজা করেছি।
আমার চিরকালের আশায়,
আমার সকল ভালোবাসায়,
আমার মায়ের দিদিমায়ের পরানে–
পুরানো এই মোদের ঘরে
গৃহদেবীর কোলের ‘পরে
কতকাল যে লুকিয়ে ছিলি কে জানে।
যৌবনেতে যখন হিয়া
উঠেছিল প্রস্ফুটিয়া,
তুই ছিলি সৌরভের মতো মিলায়ে,
আমার তরুণ অঙ্গে অঙ্গে
জড়িয়ে ছিলি সঙ্গে সঙ্গে
তোর লাবণ্য কোমলতা বিলায়ে।
সব দেবতার আদরের ধন
নিত্যকালের তুই পুরাতন,
তুই প্রভাতের আলোর সমবয়সী–
তুই জগতের স্বপ্ন হতে
এসেছিস আনন্দ-স্রোতে
নূতন হয়ে আমার বুকে বিলসি।
নির্নিমেষে তোমায় হেরে
তোর রহস্য বুঝি নে রে,
সবার ছিলি আমার হলি কেমনে।
ওই দেহে এই দেহ চুমি
মায়ের খোকা হয়ে তুমি
মধুর হেসে দেখা দিলে ভুবনে।
হারাই হারাই ভয়ে গো তাই
বুকে চেপে রাখতে যে চাই,
কেঁদে মরি একটু সরে দাঁড়ালে।
জানি না কোন্ মায়ায় ফেঁদে
বিশ্বের ধন রাখব বেঁধে
আমার এ ক্ষীণ বাহু দুটির আড়ালে।’

The story of my birth

The little boy asks his mother –
‘From where did I come?
Where did you find me dear?’
His mother smiles through tears of joy
Clasping him to her breast
‘You hid in the wishes of my heart.’
You were in the games I played,
And the make believe life I led
As to Shiva in my prayer,
I made you over and over.
With my gods you hid
Upon the highest seat,
It was you I worshipped
As my prayers to them I said.
In all the wishes of my heart
And all the love I have felt,
And the love of my mother
And her mother too.
In this ancient line of ours
In the lap of our household gods
Who knows how long
You have hidden and played.
When in my youth,
My heart blossomed,
You were the fragrance
That surrounded my form
With gentleness and grace.
Beloved of all the gods
You are as old as time
Twin to the light of dawn
You come from dreams
On currents of happiness
To live anew in my heart.
I look upon you speechless
I fail to understand the mystery that is you
How did you become mine alone?
With a kiss from you upon my brow
You became my child, I know not how
Now smiling sweetly upon the earth.
I am afraid of losing you somehow
That is why I hold you close
And feel empty if you move aside.
I do not what traps I must set,
To bind this treasure of the world
In the embrace of my two frail arms.

2 thoughts on “জন্মকথা/Jonmokatha/The story of my birth

  1. This is how I have translated this poem –
    BIRTH STORY

    The kid asks his mum,
    ‘Where did you find me,
    From where did I come?’
    Holding him tight in an embrace
    In tears and laughter
    The mum replies,
    ‘You were in my mind
    As my deepest wish.
    You were with me
    When I was a child
    And played with my dolls.
    When worshiping Shiva in the morning
    I made and unmade you every moment.
    You were with my deity on the altar
    And with him I worshipped you too.
    You were in my hopes and desires,
    You were in my love,
    And in the hearts of my mum and grand mum.
    I don’t know how long
    You kept yourself hiding
    In our age old home
    In the lap of the goddess of our family.
    When I bloomed like a flower in my youth
    You were in me like its sweet smell
    With your softness and sweetness
    You were in my every limb.
    You are the darling of all gods
    You are eternal yet new
    You are of the same age as the morning sun
    From a universal dream
    To me you came floating
    On the floods of joy
    That eternally flows in this world.
    Staring at you in wonder
    I fail to unfold your mystery-
    How could one come only to me
    Who belongs to all?
    Embracing your body with my body
    You have come to this world as my kid.
    So I clasp you tightly in my breast
    And cry when you are away for a moment
    I always remain in fear I may lose
    One who is the darling of the world.
    I don’t know how shall I keep you
    Binding in what magic bond.’
    —————
    Janmakatha from Shishu by Rabindranath Tagore. Compare The Beginning in The Crescent Moon.

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