There, there they come— monsoonal clouds—
Exhilarating, awesome, moisture-laden,
Fragrant, earth-soaked, dense, rejuvenated
Dark-hued, somber, glorious— ready to burst!
Their deep rumblings quiver dark-blue forests
Tense peacocks out on strolls cry out
The whole world is thrilled, overwhelmed.
Intense, amazing—monsoon is on its way!
Where are you, oh young and old belles of pathways?
Where are you, oh brides of darting, fluttering eyes?
Where are you, oh female gardeners and dear nursemaids?
Where could you be, oh women all set for assignations?
Come to deep forest shades and yield to deep blue desire
Let honeyed tongues peal in gorgeous dances
Bring forth the mind-entrancing veena!
Where are you love-sick ones, all you seekers of love?
Bring forth the tom-tom, the tabor, the melodious pipe
Blow the conch and ululate, oh you brides all—
Dearly loved partaker of all our delight,
Monsoon, you're here, flaming passions anew.
With brooding eyes, on the birch leaves of arbors
You compose brand new tunes,
Based on the cloud-induced Meghmallar raga.
Monsoon is here, flaming passions anew!
Apply the fragrance of the ketoki flower on your hair
String Korobi flowers and wear them around your slender waist
Lay out Kadamba pollens on your bed
Daub your eyes with soothing eye-salves!
Clink your twin bracelets rhythmically
Make your peacocks dance in tune
Weave a warm welcome
Lay out Kadamba pollens on your bed!
Monsoon is here; rejuvenated monsoon is here!
Suffusing the sky and filling the world with desire
The wind susurrates through forests, making trees sway
Plants and creepers lilt rhythmically to its tune,
Poets of all ages meet in the heavens
Making the heady wind resonate tunefully
With lyrics that transcend time
Till hundreds of melodies resound in forest paths.
Fakrul Alam is professor of English at the University of Dhaka