Malatibala Balika Bidyalay
English Translation by Barnali Saha
Recitation of Joy Goswami's original Bengali poem Malatibala Balika Bidyalay by Barnali Saha
Benimadhab, Benimadhab, I want to visit your home
Benimadhab, do you still remember me?
Benimadhab, when you played the flute of romance--
under the lush green canopy, I was a pupil at Malati School
Sitting at my desk I solved math problems in our small classroom
Outside the class our teacher alongside her groom
I was standard nine, I was sari
We met, Benimadab, at Sulekha's home.
Benimadhab, Benimadhab, well-read and smart
When visiting from town I am but dark
Just one glance at you and I ran to my abode
Benimadhab, my father works at a store.
Despite it all hums the whining little bee, in the arbor blooms life decree
And in my evening study hour I miscalculate my sums
I was standard nine, I was sweet sixteen
Clandestinely we met beside the bridge.
Benimadhab, Benimadhab, tell me the truth
After all these years do you still remember our past?
Did you ever tell your girlfriend about us?
I saw you just once together with her
Under a light, a marvelous light
I tell you I thought you two looked smart
The sight quenched my eyes, the sight burned my eyes
I came home and wished you good luck.
At night when I go to sleep at the basement chamber
Silvery moon rays illuminate the bedding sheets spread on the floor
My other sister, the one younger than me, is lost in the barbed thoroughfare
She just disappeared; I don’t know with whom she now resides
Today you have, what will happen tomorrow? Tomorrow is the devil
Nowadays I am the neighborhood needlework tutor
Yet fire, Benimadhab, why the fire does not lit?
How will it be if I end too up being another fallen woman?
The orginal Bengali poem by poet Joy Goswami in transliterated Bangla:
Benimadhab, Benimadhab, tomar bari jabo
Benimadhab, tumi ki aar amar katha bhabo
Benimadhab, mohanbanshi tomal tarumule
Bajiyechile, aami takhon Maloti iskule
Deske bose anko kori, chotto classghar
Baire didimonir pashe didimonir bor
Ami takhon nabam shreni, ami takhon sari
Aalap holo, Benimadhab, Sulekhader bari.
Benimadhab, Benimadhab, lekhaparay bhalo
Sahar theke berate ele, aamar rang kalo
Tomay dekhe ek doure paliye gechi ghare
Benimadhab, aamar baba dokane kaaj kare
Kunje oli gunje tobu, futeche manjari
Sondhyebela porte bose anke bhul kari
Ami takhon nabam shreni, ami takhon sholo
Bridger dhare, Benimadhab, lukiye dekha holo.
Benimadhab, Benimadhab eto diner pare
Satti balo, sesab katha ekhono mone pare?
Sesab katha bolecho tumi tomar premikake?
Ami kebal ekti din tomar pashe take
Dekhechilam alor niche; apurbo se alo
Sweekar kari, dujankei maniyechilo bhalo
Juriye dilo chokh amar, puriye dilo chokh
Barite ese bolechilam, oder bhalo hok!
Rate ekhon ghumote jai ektolar ghare
Mejher upar bichana pata. jyotsna ese pare
Aamar pare je bon chilo, chorapather banke
Miliye geche, janina aaj kar sange thake
Aaj juteche, kaal ki habe? - kaler ghare sani
Ami ekhan ei paray selai didimoni
Tobu aagun,Benimadhab aagun jwale koi?
Kemon habe amio jadi nasto meye hoi?
Barnali is a creative writer, painter and elocutionist from Nashville, TN, and is a regular contributor to Washington Bangla Radio.