Dina Nath Nadim
Candy and Absinth

two mosquitoes whirling around the bulb,
the bride and the bridegroom in the wedlock circle;
there under the shady tree a daffodil,
just come out after laving the earth;
someone is perspiring behind the pranky veil,
a gale of hyacinth aroma is pushing the window-pane;
a sandal tree has bloomed at Manzgam,
the blue curtains are quivering,
Cleopatra is perhaps set out for a bath;
there on two buds in the flower-vase
a semblance of two serpents,
Shishnag is located amidst an ocean,
the lotus brought forth Brahma;
behind the mirror, the bangles jingle;
I think it is the midnight hour,
a murmur is heard behind the curtain,
two eyes peeping through the holes
how big and how loving!
a gaze, a smile, a yank!
all silk, all sleek!
an avalanche slipped down the slope;
a Chenar-tree with profuse and soothing shade,
a straightly cypress with lofty height;
the goldfinch took flight to the azure,
the gazelle swiftly jumped into the flames,
or, perhaps, Kunti called her Karna,
a babe is born in a cowshed,
a picture on the wall looked agape,
after ten days, the work-woman talked to her spouse;
when the waning moon was set, in the dark
Mary, clad in white attire, ambled
along the hill-side and disappeared;
the day-break is aglow in the face,
the pinnae of clouds are ablaze,
the hair of winds is ruffled,
the weed in the garden is sprinkled with dew,
a delicate jasmine bush cap-a pie
shapely bulging at the middle,
candy and absinth, absinth and candy,
Shakuntala thus walked to her father’s house.

Translated from the Kashmiri by Shafi Shauq.