Shall I Wait Till I Understand Pablo Neruda

Perchance I happened to meet
One editor of a newspaper big
In conversation I told him
About my interest in writing
In Odia and in English do I write
And conveyed my wish
To get them published.

Asked he me some questions
To gauge my knowledge depth
Ma'm! Have you read
Jayanta Mohapatra and Pablo Neruda?

I am a casual writer
Not a person who has read much
Limited is my knowledge in literature
Yes, Great Poems one or two I have read
From Jayanta Mohapatra and Pablo Neruda
To be frank
I could not fully comprehend

Then he recited with all right intonations
Some stanza's from Neruda's poems
And some of his own creations
I heard in amazement
How to the ears they sound so sweet

After he left
I questioned myself
Questioned my knowledge limited
How I dare to venture to this world
A world full of Jayanta Mohapatra, Ramakanta Ratha
Shakespeare and Wordsworth
Above all Pablo Neruda

Restless was I
Restless were my days
As a voice in me always tormented
'I do want to come out', the voice implored
I want to see the light
Oh Mother, Bring me out

What the great minds say of me
I brought her to the fore
And looked at her
Eyes, face and forehead
What the future
Written there
I know not, I know not
Am I not beautiful, my baby asked
Oh! You are beautiful, very beautiful
You are my sweet child
I would not compare you
With that of Pablo Neruda
Or never that with Jayanta Mohapatra.

I blew a kiss on her forehead
And in whisper i said
Oh my child
Always, always feel blessed.

by Bharati Nayak

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