I was so excited to get an email from Bam Dev Sharma, Head of Campus of International Languages for Tribhuvan University, Nepal. Bam Dev Sharma and I met during my recent visit to Nepal and he asked for permission to translate one of my poems into Nepali. Here is the Nepali translation of my poem The Boat House Apartments.
गये राती अर्को कोठाका
दम्पती हरुले बास्प कुलित एन्त्र
जस्तै प्रेम गरे
एक अर्का को मुखमा कर्कशोर
आवाजहरु छ्ता चुल्ल पोख्दै
तर तल्लो तला को मान्छे
तेल भट्टि जस्तै सुत्यो
आफ्ना लुहाका फोक्सा हरुलाई
खिया परेका छाती हरुको तौलमा ठडाएर
माथि तालकि महिला
पुटिला कुर्कुचा हरुले भुइमा चप्पल चलाऊदै थियिन्
जस्तो कि चिसो पानीमा जहाज
कर्कल चि्तकारले हुत्तिएर अगाडि बढ्छ
मेरो आफ्नो योनिक एन्त्र पनि
योनी अङग माथि पुतली जस्तो गून्जन्छ
जस्तो कि म प्रकाश पुन्ज हुँ
एदी मेरो सहरको डेरा घर
भसिएर गहिरो खाडल मा गयो भने
सोह्र वटा आत्मा हरु गुम्ने छन ।
धेरै राती यि भित्ता हरु बाट हराएर
हामीहरु तारा हेर्न सक्दैनौ।
The Boat House Apartments
Tonight the couple in the next room makes love like radiators,
squealing and steaming into each other’s mouths.
The man downstairs sleeps—an oil furnace.
Upstairs, the woman with the meaty ankles
shuffles her slippers over the floor, a wooden ship
aching its cold water. My vibrator acts like a furious
moth, beating itself against my clitoris as if I were a bug light.
The apartment building speaks to us, saying:
I appear to be made of quarry and fist, but I am days,
the nylon thread of nights. You look like people—all made
out of bodies—but you are really hours,
made up only of minutes.
You are gone quick as condensation evaporating off my
cement. Don’t spend yourselves quietly.
You have this one night. Go ahead. Disturb the neighbors.
Bam Dev told me that when he read it in Nepali to a Nepali audience, people said that it sounded close to a Nepalese song, and had a song-like quality. You can check out Bam Dev Sharma’s poetry at his blog, bunyantree.blogspot.com I especially like the poem, The Table.