Editor’s Choice














Agyeya (Sachchidananda Hirananda Vatsyayana, (1911 –1987)



Translated by Elizabeth Kurian Mona


Sachchidananda Hirananda Vatsyayana, was popularly known by his pen-name Agyeya, (meaning Beyond comprehension). He was a pioneer of modern trends not only in the realm of poetry, fiction, but also in criticism and journalism. He was one of the most prominent exponents of the ‘Nayi kavita’ (New Poetry) in Hindi. Agyeya received numerous honours such as the Sahithya Akademi Award, Jnanpith Award, and the international Golden Wreath Award for poetry.
The poems are from the collection ‘Hari ghaas par kshan bhar’ translated by Elizabeth Kurian Mona from Hyderabad. She writes poetry in English, Hindi, Telugu and Urdu. Her email is monalizak@rediffmail.com





Poetic are flowers
Prosaic are leaves,
In all, harmony breathes,
Is there any meaning
That this grass underfoot
Cannot unfold?

Surrender is symphony, devotion- music,
Compassion is refrain – love of humanity.
Seek not for the pause;
Egotism itself is a pause
Continue the fight with yourself,
My friend!





All singing,
All rejoicing,
Ceases here itself.

An unanswered quest,
A lidless vigil.






Isles of the river are we,
We do not beseech the river
To flow away from us;
It gives us shape-
Our angles, elevations, sand-flows-
All contours are moulded by it
It’s our mother;
We are born from it.

But we are isles, not the stream;
Our surrender is complete
We are ever the isles of the river
But we do not flow, for that means
Transforming into sand.
If we flow, we lose our existence,
We’ll be swept off our feet,
Immersed, fragmented,
Suffer and be carried away.
Once we become sand,
Can we ever be streams?
We shall only muddy the water
And make it unfit for use.

Isles are we
This is not a curse,
But our fate
Sons of the river are we
Resting on its lap
It connects us with the mainland
Which is our ancestor.

Flow, river, flow on…
The legacy we inherit
From the mainland,
Burnish it,
Bestow culture on us.
If ever it so happens,
Out of sheer exuberance,
The outrage of others
Or the rapid spin of planets,
You surge forward, a roaring deluge,
Turning into a flow of death,
And annihilation,
We shall accept that also.
Within it, we’ll become sand,
Be filtered, congregate,
Get a firm footing elsewhere
And a new identity;
Mother, once again
Bestow culture.






Clouds overcast the sky;
I have not imprisoned
Your remembrance
In the cage of memories;
I did not wish to store your love
In jaded jars of possessiveness.

Clouds overcast the sky
Your thoughts gather thick
Helpless drops surge and shower
Your remembrance pours down
I know not who whispers in my soul
That this is precious to you too.
You too have known pain closely.

Pain refines everyone
And though it does not itself know
To grant deliverance,
It teaches those whom it refines
To keep everyone free.

But whatever it be,
Now the clouds have thickened
The first showers have fallen
On the desirous earth;
Sweet fragrance
Of the enamored soil
Pervades the air.

Drench away, dear clouds!
Do you know,
How many hearts have overflowed
With blessings, in tune with you?






Oh Poet, what is the matter?
Are you heart -broken?
Put your bird-heart upon your sleeve
(Ah Tyranny! Hunter!)
Who knows which is the fallen flower,
Whose sobbing memories make
The bulbul so restless,
-Ask me not, friend,
I too weep over my broken heart
(Dare you play with bulbuls again?)

So your emotions are aroused!
Sheets of water have spread
From a handful of tears!
Drown yourself! Rain!

Hark oh Poet!
Feelings are not the source,
Feelings are merely manure!
Let them be pushed deep down,
Let them mature little more,
Expand and become warm.
In the folds of darkness, let them dissolve
And be absorbed, seep and compose.
So that the quintessence thereof
May make the soil of the mind fertile.
Emotions only yield fruit when
The saplings of the world-welfare
Breaks forth from it.

Poet, are you heart broken?
The land will be ploughed,
But search diligently in your inner self
Whether the seed of human welfare
Exists therein.






I recollect everything,
I have not forgotten anything.
-My agitated fingers playing
Upon your body- and the play
Which was reality, making me forget self,
The vitality of all my senses being aroused

Senses remain awake
Engrossed in the game,
In which I am your playmate;
Free from the web of creation of humanity,
Like an animal breaks its tether and flees
Man himself being,
A tiny part of eternal creation.

But the one who sleeps
After awakening the sleeping senses,
Does remember everyone.

The one who deludes is unable to forget
The one who beguiles,
Remains unblemished.
It is he who says that the loves live
And live in restlessness.
Yes, they are all there.
And my love, you too
Moonlight too.
Sweet fragrance lives
In the leaves and buds;
Moonlight exists
Otherwise I exist not

So accept my love-
That is always there
Love is – A treasure
Their love alone is love
Who have ceased to be.
Accept my love,
It encompasses
The moonlight, you and
All the loves past and lost.
Otherwise I exist not
I have not forgotten any of them
I remember all.


Post a Comment