The Return of Sarasvati

We present this work in honor of Vikram Samvat New Year.

Sumitranandan Pant
1900 – 1977


Youth’s splendor is on her limbs,
on her face the sweat of toil
and the sun’s red burning;
a basket of golden grain upon her head,
she comes and goes along the boundary dikes:
her waist supple
and thighs that shimmer—
eternal child of rain and heat and frost,
this agile-footed
dark-skinned girl,
with a sprig of wheat between her lips.
Heigh ho, two days—
That’s all her youth!—
dream of a moment
not long remembered.
Ground down with sorrow,
worn out by troubled times,
her body withers,
its wealth of youth untimely spent;
a blad of grass adrift from shore,
that laughed and played a few brief moments with the waves.

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