‘It was dusty. The rain kept beating down.
The streets were empty in our ancient town.
The clouds of the past never went any where
Caught by a thousand umbrellas as they were.
If they went, would the bus stop still wait sleepy eyed?
And rickshaws pulled by boatmen in knee deep water ply?
If they went would the rains be revealed once again?
Will I see you in that sodden crowd?
That was the time of storms in the city
My brain filled with all kinds of muck
I pushed my sleeves up for poetry alone
Pages from my diary the only friends I had.
What lesson were you rushing to? Bengali, or English was it?
All I remember is that you were a Rilke fan
The college walls knitted together each cloud
Sunshine already wiped clean on kite wings of gold.
That year the rains came down so hard
Every cloud from all across the world
Shed their words in drops of rain
Filling colleges across the city with pain.
We bend, our fingers touching like flints
Does wet stone ever catch on fire?
In the business of clouds an umbrella is a must
Even though it might rain in a suburb far away.
Let your eyes stumble upon mine. Let all the glances fly away.
Let a bird flutter helpless behind your glasses.
Hide all the thunder within your heart
While this goes on we keep getting wet.’
An excerpt from Borshar Priyo Chithi by Srijato
About the poet: Srijato was born in 1975 in Calcutta, India. He writes in Bengali or Bangla, the language spoken in West Bengal in India and across the border in the country of Bangladesh. His Wikipedia page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srijato