Bridge to Global Literature

Let’s all remember that more and more poetry gets lost without earnest attempts at translation.Read poetry here to get a glimpse of the rhythms and resonances of languages you don’t know.

Between Us— A Poem by Indrani Tuli

Jul 30, 2022 | Poetry | 0 comments

Between Us…

We were at the picnic spot, near the rivulet,
Everyone was busy, talking about his pet.
The tummy was full, now journey back to school…
“No one makes a fuss, go and board the bus!”
The bus was full fast; I waited patiently, ready to board last.
I looked back, a sudden tug,
A dirty puppy, looking up,
eager for a hug.
I carried it in my arms,
The children got excited…
“Ma’am ma’am, germs!”

We enjoyed the journey
With the puppy, named Burney.
It was taken to the Vet,
He took good care of it and required treatment did it get.
Hesitant was I, at the age of forty-seven,
Just as before… when I was only eleven.
My mom used to shoo away the dogs,
They were not to be kept at home…
My hubby took my mom’s place
“Oh, dear! Here and there it will roam.”

I was awake the whole night,
It could be ill-treated, was my fright.
Whenever I was up, to give it some milk,
That poor creature came closer and gave a rub of silk.
Early morning, I carried it and went across the river,
So it would not find its way back,
Though, the thought gave me a shiver.
I was unable to get rid of the cute, little thing
It continuously followed me, while I was returning.
I ran erratically, here and there,
So it should not follow me and could come near.
While crossing back the bridge, tears rolled down my cheeks;
That, sweet, stray, poor, little thing; and I played dirty tricks!

There was peace at my place, my master was happy,
He was not worried at all about the cute little puppy.
I tried to console myself… it was only a stray dog,
But could it sleep properly, amidst the frost and fog?
He couldn’t have anything other than milk,
How could I do this to that bundle of silk!
Days passed, the wound healed, there was no bark or howl,
But the doggy was remembered, there lay its milk bowl.

We were in mid-river, white water rafting,
Didn’t care much about the sky… it could start raining.
The ripples were mild, which suddenly turned wild.
All over there, were hue and cry,
The drivers were tireless, in their try.
A sudden storm arose, oh God! Death was so close,
The raft turned over, no chance to recover…
The life-saving jacket!
Pooh, I was caught in a water pocket.
Going up and down
Frightened of the crashing crown.
A sudden gentle tug,
Could get the support of something… must be a rug!
Vision blurred, head reeled,
A thought came, of the far away field.
Farmers farming there… hunters hunting hare,
No one could hear, nobody came for care.
I found myself near the shore,
Or was it heaven’s door?
I was in its arms, the whirlpool! Of no harm.
I recognized Burney,
He saved me from the death journey.

One day, only one day, it was with me,
So much love, oh God! I was free.
I would never care for others,
It saved me and I was a mother.
I held it tight, with all my might.
Come anyone, try to separate,
I would rather die than cooperate.
Burney is with me, a full-grown dog…
It became strong in rain, frost, and fog.
Forgetting my cruelty, it had mothered me,
I don’t care anymore, whatever the situation may be.

Also Read:

Sand Worm and Other Poems— Sambhunath Chattopadhyay

A Poem for All Those Unwritten Ones and Other Poems – Kamal Vora

Indrani Bhattacharya, a.k.a Indrani Tuli, accumulated invaluable life experiences by spending time in different parts of India with her husband and her teaching job. All her postgraduate studies were completed outside Bengal.
Indrani loves reading, painting, and traveling. She writes both in English and Bengali. Her writings have been published in various journals. For some time, she was a freelance reporter for The Telegraph. Her collection of life stories, Probashir Shaat Shawtero by The Cafe Table, and her novel, Haraaye Khnuji by Ananda Prakashani, were deeply honored. Her published e-books are Naa Bawlaa Baani and Awntoheen Rawhoshyo Nilawy.


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