Sunday, August 9, 2009

Melancholy of a Crow- by sudhakar yendluri


Srisaila Bramarambika Devi

Mother! I have understood that

“Don’t touch me, my Mala crow”

You know that my entry defiled it

You got your temple perfectly cleansed

By which Dharma was it done?

I am a bird

That picks up grain

From the manure-heaps


By which tradition was it cleansed?

Do you know what ornithology says?

Whether I was Mala[1] crow or Madiga [2]crow

Did you fact-find it?

Do your temple- trustees and priestly classes know

That there is one crow- world?

In the Kakasura[3] story

I have lost my eye

Blames and defames

I have been subjected to since then

Of my wings

One is for darkness

And another for light

Be it darkness or light

Or thunderbolts that can be given for this world

Only when I flap my wings with a cry

What distinction is there

Between me and the bat

That has not yet got entry merit?

What is my varna-flaw?

You consumed ghee[4]

And left excreta to me

Dead ancestors are offered Pindakudu[5]

Then I am called by caw -caw

I am the scavenger-crow

That cleaned your fetor

Am I rejected now?

In the lone world

Have I become a desolate crow?


Did you not see the dirty parrots

Perching so many times on your temple-domes?

Did owls not cry so many times on your head?

On your temple- pillars

Did vultures not eat dead rats several times?

Is it I who has become so discarded?

Is this ‘cleansing’ for my sake?

Offence on my part! What?

Do you not know the essence of philosophy?

If submission is God’s offer

Can you tell me whose faeces is this?

If Bramarambika’s is the holy water

Can you disclose whose piss is it?

If I drop my filth from any tree

It will not smell foul

Though I am black in colour

Why my faeces is white

Did anybody unravell this secret?

Did anybody read the myth of a crow?

There is a priestly class to clean you

Who is there to clean my community and me?

Goddess Brahmarambika!

I survive without security

Did I ask for golden cages

Or for pattu pitambaralu?[6]

Unbearable to the burning sun

I entered your temple


For the sake of coolness

And for a little drinking water

I cried caw –caw

This is my mistake

Whether my defilement was properly cleansed

Lest, the sin of my birth should afflict you

Your people cannot live the life of a crow

And the grave life

But my people can do.

1. A sub-caste in the Dalit community

2. A sub-caste in the Dalit community, both the castes have been considered degraded in Hindu society

3. It is a mythical story of a crow in the Ramayana

4. A type of clear butter used in Indian cookery

5. A ball of food offered ceremonially to spirits of dead ancestors

Flock of raw cottonsmeared with turmeric or kumkum offered to deities at the time of worship as a token

representing an offer of clothes

varthamanam (the presence time)

I can't talk now about my nation.

my country ia a Sakuntala

Delivered of and forgotten.

I'am a refugee bird in my land.

I'm one shedding tears between swords and horns

I'm not a millionaire hood.

On tens and thousands of hoods,

I stand as a bubble.

It's me every piece of the mirror being broken.

I can't walk fearless between any two men.

I can't live in peace between any two Gods.

Between two languages -my conversation snubbed.

Between two rivers -union of waters prohibited.

I stuck the national flag

On my chest.

Listening to lessons of history

In my childhood class

I preserved the flower of my country

In my school bag.

Bags touched-bombs blast now

Hearts moved-fires hiss.

Now this nation like a black boar frightens me

With it's lust for blood.

This country- aquestion paper with no key

They send word to Siddhartha having cut the wings of swans.

Here, the state it self shoots ,yet rewards the dead.

Inaugurates flower gardens ,yet prohibits fragrences

Stifling the throat of the nation ,broadcasts the anthem

Some where down the well a frogling is croaking.

Some mad cap of poet is

Singing MERA BHATRTH MAHAN in a dreams meet.

News papers carry the soaked blood all night.

Some VISWAMITHRA is laying the foundation stone

For a heaven neither here nor there.

Some one is administering anaesthesia to BHARATHA MAATHA

Some body is leaving me among

Mechines alienating me.

I'm searching for my mother land

With an iron stove on hea

And a blanket of sorrow

I'am going for my mother's breast.

If i'm not reborn

Crusifing,nailing, crowning my self

Resurrecting in the land of expiration,

I'm in eligible to live in this land.

If i can't sing in the chorus

My song is a crime now.

I don't intend to sing the

Lines with which I don't agree.

I don't wish to see the men in my nation

As devine or sage like.

I wish to see the sheen of clusters of clouds

In men as either

Bunches of shrubs smelling sweet

Or as perennial rivers spreading wavelets.

I dream of the nature's beauty at dawn

Shattering demonic darkness to pieces.

I don't like even an ant to be alone.

I can't bear even a puppy dying of hunger.

I tune on my dream KANJIRA new songs.

Standing on live coal I intone the truth.

I look for a new season

Of an uninfected man-tree.

A dream on behalf of a million eyes

Of the present, a new nation.


' MO'(english)