It is no secret that I am an unabashed fan of Jayant Kaikini who writes poetry and fiction in Kannada. He has such a fresh pair of eyes with which he sees so much that I can never see. Well, see his poem Bobby for example (in my translation). If my translation displeases you, do comment, I will work on it.
* Jayant Kaikini
Have you conversed with dogs?
Rubbing your cheeks against their
striped, spotted throbbing throats,
have you listened to their hot breathed exuberance?
Have you felt slighted as it eloped
with a bitch during mating season
ignoring the feed and
It is angrrrry at somebody in the deserted backyard –
standing with woof woof breathless ado
tongue in a tizzy, then, the moment
you touch its back like cooled off milk
it begins to soften, have you experienced it?
Have you felt proud
when it barked by mistake at you
and in utter remorse weaved itself around your feet?
Once, limping, mewling, thigh-wound bleeding,
bitten by someone, it comes to you,
lies near you in pain lifting all four,
tear line at eye’s edge,
snivelling every time medicine is applied,
whining at night, growling at each touch;
have you felt scared at this
been melted by the wagging tail?
A visitor warns, it may be rabid, the tail is too rigid.
Frightened you make queries, hire a gun man and
get him to take aim concealed and
At the moment of the shot
have you noticed its frantic gaze facing the cocked gun?
In those eyes – distant wrecked ships – dying days –
rain soaked cemeteries – sounds… didn’t you hear?
In those eyes, oblivious of even your limbs,
didn’t you merge with the world?