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A Spring Piece Left In The Middle - Poem by Nazim Hikmet

Taut, thick fingers punch
the teeth of my typewriter.
Three words are down on paper
in capitals:
SPRING
SPRING
SPRING...
And me -- poet, proofreader,
the man who's forced to read
two thousand bad lines
every day
for two liras--
why,
since spring
has come, am I
still sitting here
like a ragged
black chair?
My head puts on its cap by itself,
I fly out of the printer's,
I'm on the street.
The lead dirt of the composing room
on my face,
seventy-five cents in my pocket.
SPRING IN THE AIR...

In the barbershops
they're powdering
the sallow cheeks
of the pariah of Publishers Row.
And in the store windows
three-color bookcovers
flash like sunstruck mirrors.
But me,
I don't have even a book of ABC's
that lives on this street
and carries my name on its door!
But what the hell...
I don't look back,
the lead dirt of the composing room
on my face,
seventy-five cents in my pocket,
SPRING IN THE AIR...

*

The piece got left in the middle.
It rained and swamped the lines.
But oh! what I would have written...
The starving writer sitting on his three-thousand-page
three-volume manuscript
wouldn't stare at the window of the kebab joint
but with his shining eyes would take
the Armenian bookseller's dark plump daughter by storm...
The sea would start smelling sweet.
Spring would rear up
like a sweating red mare
and, leaping onto its bare back,
I'd ride it
into the water.
Then
my typewriter would follow me
every step of the way.
I'd say:
"Oh, don't do it!
Leave me alone for an hour..."
then
my head-my hair failing out--
would shout into the distance:
"I AM IN LOVE..."

*

I'm twenty-seven,
she's seventeen.
"Blind Cupid,
lame Cupid,
both blind and lame Cupid
said, Love this girl,"
I was going to write;
I couldn't say it
but still can!
But if
it rained,
if the lines I wrote got swamped,
if I have twenty-five cents left in my pocket,
what the hell...
Hey, spring is here spring is here spring
spring is here!
My blood is budding inside me!


20 and 21 April 1929


Trans. by Randy Blasing and Mutlu Konuk (1993)
Nazim Hikmet

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Judaai Ne Ussay Daikha

Dushmano Ke Sath Mere Dost Bhi Azad Hain
Dekhna Hai Khenchta Hai Muj Pe Pehla Teer Kon

From fairest creatures we desire increase,
That thereby beauty's rose might never die,
But as th

Byaan kar un se mera haal e dil


Mohsin

Wo shaks ye na samjay k us ki yad nahin Aati

Goongi Ho Gai Aaj Kuch Zaban Kehte Kehte
Hich-Kicha Gaya Main Khud Ko Musalman Kehte Kehte

Ye Ba

Ierne's now our royal Care:
We lately fix'd our Vice--roy there.
How near was she to be undone,
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Kisi ki aankh se sapne churaa kar kuch nahin milta,
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Chalo Us Ka Nahi To KHUDA Ka Ehsan Laitay Hai FRAZ
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After a long night of interrogation,
followed by a thirty-minute trial,
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Apni tanhaayii mere naam pe aabaad kare

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Abhi to aap hi haayil hai raasta shab ka
Qareeb aaye to dekheNge hausla shab ka

Chali to aayi th

How can I then return in happy plight
That am debarred the benefit of rest?
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Meri Bahon Mai Behakne Ki Saza Bi Sun Le

Ab Bohat Dair Mai Azad Karon Ga Tuj Ko

Gham kaa vo zor ab mere andar nahi rahaa
Is umr meiN, maiN itana samar_var nahi rahaa

Is ghar me

Don't show so much of love
on anyone
because
it creates a non-curable pain
when they avoid u.

Kitne aish se rehte hon ge kitne itraate hon ge,
Jaane kese log woh hon ge jo us ko bhaate hon ge,

pyaas vo dil kii bujhaane kabhii aayaa bhii naheen
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What was he doing, the great god Pan,
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nazar aa rahe hain jo tanha se hum
so yun hai ki bhar pae duniya se hum
na parwa hamein haal-e-b

Muhabbat Khof Hoti hai, ,
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Urdu Poetry

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