Abha Iyengar

Poems written in Hindi and translated into English by Abha Iyengar



शायर को दुनिया के करीब न लाओ
 उसका दिल ज़रा नाज़ुक सा होता है


Don’t bring the poet too close to the world
Her heart is of the delicate kind.



तुम किसी और दुनिया से आये हो 
और चाहते हो की मैं अकस्मात बदल जाऊं 
यह जानना तुमने गवारां नहीं समझा 
शायद मैं भी कुछ शर्तें लेकर आई हूँ 

किस तरह यह समझ लिया तुमने 
कि हर पीढ़ी में एक ही बात मिलेगी? 
एक तरफा वार्तालाप की मैं आदी नहीं हूँ 
मेरी आवाज़ भी तुम्हें सुनना पड़ेगी 

मुझे किसी के ज़ोर कि समझ नहीं 
न ही खुद ज़बरदस्ती करने कि चाह है 
यह बात लेकिन तुम्हें समझनी है ज़रूर 
मुझे अपनी इज्ज़त की बेहद परवाह है 



You have arrived from another world
And expect me to change overnight
You did not think it important to know
Perhaps I too will come with conditions.

How did you come to this conclusion that
Every generation will be the same as before?
I am not used to one-sided conversations
You will have to listen to my voice as well.

I don’t understand other's compulsions  
Nor do I have the wish to compel anyone
But you need to understand this truth
I care a lot about my self-respect.

Abha Iyengar is an award-winning, internationally published poet, author, editor, and British-Council-certified Creative Writing mentor. She won the Kota Press Anthology contest (U.S.A., 2003). She was a Featured Poet at Prakriti Foundation’s Poetry Festival 2010. She has eight published books to her credit, and her collection of poems is titled “Yearnings”.  Her poems have been included in various journals and anthologies, most recently Sahitya Akademi’s, “The Lie of the Land” (2020), Red Rivers’ “The Shape Of A Poem” (2021) and “Witness: Red River’s Poetry of Dissent” (2021). She was longlisted for the WE- Kamala Das Poetry Award ’20. “Parwaaz” (her poem-film) won the Special Jury Prize in Patras, Greece. Website: www.abhaiyengar.com