Sanjeev Kaushal

Sanjeev Kaushal translates Naresh Saxena : Hindi to English


Earth, once you turn
You keep on turning 
Don’t you feel dizzy
Spinning around your centre
And yet another centre 
Carrying darkness in one half
And light in the other      
Sometimes when you tremble 
Turning night into day 
And day into night 
It feels you will annihilate 
Your entire home and all that belongs to you:
Trees mountains cities rivers villages cliffs everything
You will destroy them all
Earth, are you a woman?
There is so much water on your surface
And only water underneath 
But in your womb 
At the centre of your womb 
Blazes fire
Just fire
Earth, are you a woman?
How silently 
Undergoing many a process 
You transform your coal into diamonds
Enduring such heat, pressure and humidity
More than gems 
Your heart stores mysteries of them
Earth, are you a woman?
Once you turn
You keep on turning.

Throughout the Night

Trains rush overnight
Trucks carry the load
Factories run
Workers remain unconscious
The conscious toss and turn 
Criminals sleep tight throughout the night
There is no connection now
Of darkness with crime 
All offices of crime open in the morning. 


Children, please be sure to stay with me
At the time when 
I am returning to flowers, fruits and greenery 
For the last time 
The heat of my body
Will warm the surrounding air
Which will continue to change
The temperatures of air
I will rise with smoke
Transformed into 
What you study as carbon dioxide
I will cover the vegetation 
Plants will turn a bit greener 
When they absorb it
Fruits will ripen wherever they are 
Whenever the sweetness of fruits reaches you
The greenery lures you
Or you feel a change in the air
You will recognise
And say


What runs through horses' veins as blood
And flows from cows' udders as milk 
What remains prostrate on the ground 
And is constantly trampled upon
One day, all of a sudden
Stands with pride
On minarets of palaces 
And walls of forts 
Beginning their demolition.

Sanjeev Kaushal teaches English at IGIPESS, University of Delhi, India. He is a Hindi poet and translator. His collection of poems titled ‘Ungaliyon Mein Parchhaiyan‘ has been published by Sahitya Academy, New Delhi. His poems have appeared in various reputed Hindi magazines. His translations of German poetry titled ‘Khwahish Hai Namumkin Kee‘ and ‘November Kee Dhoop‘ have also been published.

Naresh Saxena is one of the finest Hindi poets, both popular and critically acclaimed. He has received several prestigious awards, including Pahal Samman, Nagarjun Puraskar, and the UP government’s Sahitya Bhushan Samman. His work has been brought out by well-known Hindi publishers, Bharatiya Jnanpith and  Rajkamal Prakashan.