Sunday, May 17, 2009

0 to 4 : Sharmy Pandey’s Anti-poems

In English Transcreation : Parnab Mukherjee

Translator’s Note : It has been a decade of reading Sharmy. The transcreation fermented deep within me all these years. Till one night – I took paper to pen. Sharmy brings a unique phenomenon in Bangla underground poetry – it is the use of body as a metaphor.

Sharmy’s poems are graphically sexual and in that sense a weapon. I think she is amongst the very few living Bangla poets who have taken sexuality into realms of realism.

Yes, that is good literature
ask Falguni Roy
ask Ginsberg
ask Amiyabhusan
ask Piyush Dhar

In her poem “Falguni” Sharmy (English Transcreation by the author of this note) writes : “A blue light washes the golden 60s as the taxi driver leaves College street junction – 11 in the night and I lean my body against the seat and I watch the droplets of Magh in the window – Falguni nods his head – and there I can see his beard, white kurta, folded hands – my entire forehead filled with evening glow – my eyes filled with book fair at College Square dust – and I am moving as I am sitting with splintered hands – legs – teeth and my love for carbon…and the roadside tyre burns – and I return home – Falguni’s forehead filled with sweat – and I can still see – somewhere his attacked lips – his frame – stops at Harkata – for two cigarettes – ignition – coconut rope – silence – the fire – black door closes firmly – Subhashda were you there? The burning cigarette – black packet – disintegrating foil – paper – plastic – my body burns with heat – and Falguni after 3 decades has come to further grapple with my consciousness – bulb moves – there you are Falguni…”

I don’t care what you prefer and what you don’t
I still think Ritwik lacked Satyajit’s finesse and that was a lacking
and I still read mainstream poetry
and I think Ferlingetti is better than Ginsberg
and Kalidas is better than Ibsen
and Lautrec is better than Dali
and Badal Sircar is a bigger genius than Shambhubabu
and I still feel Kanchenjunga is the best Bangla film ever made
and I do think
you are the only successor of Falguni Roy
in Bangla poetry
with all my biases
keep it up Sharmy

1. Till my death in Jerusalem

My drops and drop of tears
Wrongly executed strokes while swimming
And the abject tiredness thereafter
Every death is agglomeration of
Gathered wood and
The bluish tinge that colours the night darkness
If my finger melts
O girl! Put the trinklets on – look good
Or you’ll have to
Absorb my sorrow
Tear apart the sympathy
Drape it all with white cloud
Night break yet nothing stops
The nobility

2. 19/4/93

And the light which gave fire
forest stories and crime
songs deposit
liking for the invisible eye
stomach deposits coal
we love old chained darkness
bubble broth mixed in darkness
scissors that turn into hands
darkness that resides in the lungs
nylon melted city drops
you squeeze the neck and the breath
take out the strings of existence
open up your breasts
look for those eyes
igniting the bones marrow

3. Collage

open up
Change, Change, Changing
on the earth
stains of reality
After 10 years
the rotten smell from the shake-up of the first book
somewhat less blood
sometime the mass of bones placed incorrectly
dreaming on, dying easily, sky coloured days,
yes, meanings keep changing
and then the gut is dissolved into vapor
let’s talk
let’s cough up all that we thought last year
first cover
first etching
or first love
existential crisscross
crisscross game
transparent colours
canvas can’t take the etching
skin peels off
so I think transparent mask
words will perforate
this mask
sky on my head and we will cross over the forest of fire
guava tree, bougainvillea smell
rain we creep out
where new born
will look at joy
we will keep crying
like a lizard that creeps up
yet no road in forest
no roof
no mind
no transformations
only a blueness where rainbows will change

4. Two Lines I Wanted To Write

Plane, Plane, Plane, Pilot Plane
From Plane came down Suchitra Sen

Thursday, May 7, 2009


By Sharmy Pandey


Sleep is an intoxicating reality
Dreams are left behind difficult sums in a notebook
Unsolved due to lack of help-book (made-easy)
Scattered emptiness is flying on the roll numbers
Submitting the paper of dreams only with a signature
Rules and regulation of a lifetime
and then one step to another
new revised dreambunch fill with chunk of questions
Black board is hanging on the eyeball
Merging sunlight to gradual deduction
Siribhanga khetrofal
Dust are falling in the eyes
Few drops of dead tears
Drawing the skyline like a chalk

Pictures on the wall
are moving to their own will
I'm reshuffling them with my gaze
My room has no door
A city is standing between us
A road map is hanging on the wall


Alone for a while
No words no nights no darkness
Sailing in a submarine for the frequencies of sound
Sinking silently for a long long time
Grasping for water light and wind
As if rooms of colourful memoirs
movement of a black dial
songs of a broken radio
Now the city will disappear by wiping away everything


Lying inside the vagina oh mother
to get smeared with juice and blood
I come back from the overwhelming influence of the computer mouse
I get up from the coolness of the mind
Living all the colours clean
My fingers are only to grow bigger
I hang from the strings of a guitar
In a dream water unties from a knot
And ultimately hangs in broken gravitation
As if in those few droplets lies
The fear for rain
I float like a diesel ash who craved to be a cloud
Thinking of giving birth to a jungle
I am painting a few fangs of grass on the sky

Transcreated from Bangla : SharmyPandey

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Writings of Sharmy Pandey


That day
the impending
in our
that day
like rain
gave out

And the night littered the road with the consumer moonlight
The tar-cheeked city still is ready for dreams in melting tungsten light
Music bows to the rusty nails from a vendor’s tool

Words bloom as moments
From the edge of voice
And memory flows
Viscous down the ears
Eyes that look back from habit, not seeing

And the entire city is filled with the smell of rotten flowers
low of New Jersey cow
flow of bitter winds

that means then-only from my city
a slice of star fell off
As it revolved and kept revolving – it ran
as one long breath
grew and
it’s splintered splinter of atoms
tottering around
What I at last wrapped in a strong polythene and carbon
And kept it alive in the warmth of dead cold burner

Many days have past like those many many days
Lots of unsaid – or less said – some what
sound less words – claps – glory and gap
lines and folds – city is not moving – when
sweat trickles down from Coca-Cola tin
not a single bus moves to destination less
destination – in absolute casualness
In an empty time crawling in the lap of the sky
moving the cloak – removing in a whiff – the clouds and
complexities – water and the drenched breath

At this moment unarmed – unarsed
Without coldness – without teeth – obsessive
Groping for a diseased search
Are now enmeshed the gothic structure of words

Pore a large dose of black on the paper
Dip your fat or thin finger
from the bottom end of the paper till the middle
mark nine close strokes
Give few drops of water and few drops
of tears of the hard brush

That’s colour
That’s sky
That’s emptiness
Or you

To be taken over by emotions returning home
with part and particles of neon
life along the ground and the plastic sound
of the mineral water – 40 ounces of local hooch
and ten twelve spurts of vomit creep and crawl across the
symbolic tramline – where lies
some dried condom-love and where the green
carpeted spread seeks for shadows everyday
the lost time trickles down with the afternoon sun
straight in the middle of the road
the back – in front or below
and seeks for the dust of vision in myopic glass
Actually that day is the day when – from the feathers
of bird flew husks and the smell of the lime of the wall
were everywhere – few drops of longing were merging in the sky
The temptation of colours – as colours – or colour – or colour-debt

Translated from Bangla By Sharmy Pandey and Parnab Mukherjee