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May 27, 2024

First Lesson

By Guna Moran

First Lesson

Sitting hunched at the hearth
of useful knowledge
she toasted her ashen eyes
through the gaps of her fingers
and very often said
You are my unique achievements
of my sacrifice
for long ten months and ten days
By birth you've got a beautiful earth
besides the vast sky
So you must be generous like the sun
and tolerant like the earth

At my birth I cried
Maybe I got the pains of my mother
Since then I have had tears in my eyes
in happiness and sorrow of people
One can't help crying
whose only companion at birth was tears

That honeyed word 'Maa'
was my first honeyed word
Since then I've blurted out 'Maa'
whenever I sit down or stand up

My birth is my mother's sacrifice
I must be made for sacrifice
An ingrate I can't be

My happiness lies in my mother's happiness
My sorrow lies in my mother's sorrow
Never can I be happy

He is the lone custodian of happiness
whose main assets are
the sun and the earth

(Original Assamese poem titled "Adipath")

Tr. © Nirendra Nath Thakuria

Article © Guna Moran. All rights reserved.
Published on 2022-01-10
Image(s) are public domain.
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