Friday, November 25, 2005

Language Pangs

Almost cueing from my nostalgic mood that the start of the holiday season has sparked, J pulled out my dog-eared copy of Sukumar Ray's Abol Tabol from it's forgotten place in the closet this morning. "Mommy read Abol Ta to me" she said. My language amnesia became evident as I started to read the childhood favorites pausing and halting many times.

A flood of memories followed. Grandma and I sitting in our balcony on a winter afternoon. She reading, me doubling up with laughter. Asking my mother to recite a favorite, joining along with her. Much later R (my ex) reading Ray's Pagla Dashu
to me. Remembered how beautifully he read - gifted raconteur that he was. He introduced me to the amazing poetry of Jibananda Das, Shonkho Ghosh and Joy Goswami.

Felt fleeting sad that J was never going to know the pleasures of literature that I had been introduced to. R had fulfilled my longing for the language I loved but did not know too well. I am merely passing on my amnesia to J hoping she will pick something subconsciously from Bengali music that she listens to - that it will know to reach her heart like primal things do.


bleu said...

feel jealous of J for the mother she has. If you get time, please do a small rtound of bengali poets and transaltions of fav. poetry for those strangers to it. please !!! :-))

Heartcrossings said...

Bleu - Would love to except that my Bengali is not good enough to do an adequate translation. Will post translations done by others instead.

bleu said...

Oh! thats plenty good for for me :) great! thanks!

I wish I know someone who knows good tamil poetry and its translation. (sigh!)