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.

Bibhu Padhi

Aug 25, 2020 | Poetry | 0 comments

This Place

No one owns it, except
an immense darkness.

Who else is lonely here
except myself?

Stay with me,
ask me questions
I cannot answer.

There are ghosts here,
my ancestors.

Take me to some other place,
where I can breathe.

I cannot find
my voice here.

Take me to some place
where I can breathe
the clean desert air.

I hope to rediscover my voice
in the shining grains of sand



Cold light falls on the fields
grass trembles, listens
to winter, its long tale.

Under the cold light,
there are the rough
edges of the mind,

of time. I wait.
When shall I hear from you?
Time doesn’t seem to move.

it intercepts thoughts.
I wait.


A Difficult Day

It was never so difficult
to talk to you as it is today;

your celebrations were never
so heart-breaking too.

The evening is muddy under
the ill-timed rain;

The fields are friendless,
like a blank-eyed wanderer.

I didn’t know how to
console you.

Although I knew all about
the seasons, their deliberations.

My eyes are heavy under winter,
its forbidding air.

Your celebrations are still there,
with noises and port wine.

It was never so difficult
to talk to you.

Give me your hand,
your shining hand.



Whose breath comes in
and goes out, as if it were life?

In the midst of speechlessness,
I invite my ancestors.

They are here, almost
touching me, their

light breath falls on my
brown skin, digs out histories.

The caves are here, will
always be there.

Deep under the sea water,
far from the diver’s mask.

Whose wandering voice
takes hold of me wherever I am?

Who plays his dark games
far inside the body’s mysteries?



Bibhu Padhi

Bibhu Padhi

Bibhu Padhi lives in Bhubaneswar, Orisa, India. A Pushcart nominee, published fourteen books of poetry. His poems have appeared in distinguished magazines throughout the English-speaking world, such as Contemporary Review, London Magazine, The Poetry Review, Poetry Wales, The Rialto, Stand, America Media, The American Scholar, Commonweal, The Manhattan Review, The New Criterion, Poet Lore, Poetry, Southwest Review, TriQuarterly, New Contrast, The Antigonish Review, Dalhousie Review, and Queen’s Quarterly.
They have been included in numerous anthologies and textbooks. Five of the most recent are The Bloodaxe Book of Contemporary Indian Poets, Language for a New Century (Norton) Journeys (HarperCollins), 60 Indian Poets (Penguin) and The HarperCollins Book of English Poetry.


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