Jibanananda Das (17 February 1899 – 22 October 1954 / Barisal / Bangladesh)
I Have Seen Bengal’s Face
I have seen Bengal’s face, that is why I do not seek
Beauty of the earth any more: I wake up in the dark
And see the dawn’s magpie-robin perched under the parasol-like huge leaf
Of the fig tree – on all sides I see mounds of leaves of
Black plum – banyan – jackfruit – oak – pipal lying still;
Their shadows fall on the spurge bushes on zedoary clumps;
Who knows when Chand near Champa from his madhukar boat
Saw such oaks – banyans – gamboge’s blue shades
Bengal’s beauty incomparable.
Behula too someday floating on raft on Gangur’s water –
When the fullmoon of the tenebrous twelfth night died on the river’s shoal –
Saw countless pipals and banyans beside the golden corn,
Alas, heard the tender songs of shama – and one day going to Amara.
When she danced like a torn wagtail in Indra’s court
Bengal’s river field, wild violets wept at her feet like anklet bells.
(Sonnet 4, Rupashi Bangla)
Comments about this poem (I Have Seen Bengal’s Face by Jibanananda Das )
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