Descend – Little Hesitant Steps

via Daily Prompt: Descend

MukundhN

தயங்கித் தயங்கி

அம்மாவின் கை பிடித்து
மெதுவாகப் படி இறங்குகிறது
குழந்தை.
சீராகப் போய்க் கொண்டிருந்த
காலம்
சற்று தயங்கித் தயங்கி
முன்னகர்கிறது.

-முகுந்த் நாகராஜன்

It seems next to impossible to translate a Tamil poem into English. The moment you try to translate one, everything good about it—structure, rhetoric, syntactic suspense, you name it—goes for a toss. And then it takes enormous, painful compromises on the translator’s part just to make the poem intelligible in English; forget doing justice to the original. And yet, I’m making this reckless attempt at translating the above poem with due apologies to Mukundh Nagarajan.  (This is the first draft.)

Little, hesitant steps

A little kid
holding her mother’s hand
descends the staircase slowly.
The Arrow of
Time
lurches forward
in little, hesitant steps.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s