Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Kamal Vora

No. 18 The old man stands before the mirror

No. 18 
 
The old man 
stands before the mirror, 
deep in conversation 
with the man before him, 
as if with an old friend. 
 
He is coaxing the other 
to leave home 
and take a walk with him. 
 
He turns around to leave 
but when the friendly gesture  
is not returned, 
he snarls at the other, 
starts a quarrel, 
raises his fist, 
finally stomps away and sits  
on the far chair, 
miffed.  
 
When the one in the mirror 
picks up a stick, 
he turns red with rage, 
but soon grows silent. 
 
When the whole room 
dissolves into darkness, 
the old man sits, 
hiding his face in his hands.

No. 18 The old man stands before the mirror

 ૧૮
 
વૃદ્ધ
અરીસા સામે ઊભો રહી
અરીસામાં કોઈ બીજો જણ હોય અને
એની સાથે જૂનો ઘરોબો હોય એમ
વાતે વળગ્યો છે
ઘરની બહાર સાથે ફરવા જવાનો
એકધારો આગ્રહ કરે છે
પીઠ ફેરવી ચાલવા જાય છે
પણ લંબાવેલો હાથ ભોંઠી પડે ત્યારે
એ ખીજવાઈ જઈ
એની સામે ઘુરકિયાં કરે છે
ઝગડો માંડે છે
હાથ ઉગામે છે
પછી રિસાઈને
દૂર પડેલી ખુરશી પર
બેસી જાય છે
અરીસાનો જણ લાકડી લે
એ જોઈને એનો ક્રોધ ભભૂકી ઊઠે છે
પણ પછી એ ચૂપ થઈ જાય છે
આખો ઓરડો
અંધારામાં ઓગળી જાય ત્યારે
વૃદ્ધ
હથેળીઓમાં
મોં છુપાવી બેઠો રહે છે

 
Close

No. 18 The old man stands before the mirror

No. 18 
 
The old man 
stands before the mirror, 
deep in conversation 
with the man before him, 
as if with an old friend. 
 
He is coaxing the other 
to leave home 
and take a walk with him. 
 
He turns around to leave 
but when the friendly gesture  
is not returned, 
he snarls at the other, 
starts a quarrel, 
raises his fist, 
finally stomps away and sits  
on the far chair, 
miffed.  
 
When the one in the mirror 
picks up a stick, 
he turns red with rage, 
but soon grows silent. 
 
When the whole room 
dissolves into darkness, 
the old man sits, 
hiding his face in his hands.

No. 18 The old man stands before the mirror

No. 18 
 
The old man 
stands before the mirror, 
deep in conversation 
with the man before him, 
as if with an old friend. 
 
He is coaxing the other 
to leave home 
and take a walk with him. 
 
He turns around to leave 
but when the friendly gesture  
is not returned, 
he snarls at the other, 
starts a quarrel, 
raises his fist, 
finally stomps away and sits  
on the far chair, 
miffed.  
 
When the one in the mirror 
picks up a stick, 
he turns red with rage, 
but soon grows silent. 
 
When the whole room 
dissolves into darkness, 
the old man sits, 
hiding his face in his hands.
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Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
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J.E. Jurriaanse
Literature Translation Institute of Korea
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