माधवप्रसाद घिमिरे

Translation Poem: Kaligandaki [1]

-Madhav  Prasad Ghimire

Beyond the peak of  Machhapuchhre[2]

is Muktikshetra[3], the land of liberation

where lamps glitter  in the bubbling fountainheads


your birth-place is a divine pilgrim-site of the first flame

O Kali, the river! please tell me

how do you sculpt the Shaligram[4]?


ducks, from the basin

reach the hills along the sandbanks

trees on the banks bow so low on the creepers

as if the shadows would get swept away

roam in this heart of mine, inside the womb of Rishi Jehnu[5]

the sacred resources of yours, peak like the river Ganges


‘this is the very corner where  Jadbharat[6]  practiced austerity,

where, while she was filling the water

the magnolia fell from the fairy’s head

as if touched by the footprints of the fearless Vishnu[7]

my stones have bound the crafts of Amaravati[8], the city of immortals’


‘breaking the  high peaks,  ventured towards so farther,

I have kissed even the rough and hard so passionately’

thinking that you would write some signs on the stones

‘how to portray me in art, by myself !’


O, man! beneath your very heart lie

the secrete un-known nerves

it is said that various idols breathe life

under your incantation

you are the source of all the splendor, gross happiness

though it is you whose heart is unconscious

and it is you who is the mistake of the creation


on this soil, as an unskilled sculpture`s idol, cries,

pedestrians  pass by, laughing,

who cares to listen to others’ sorrow nowadays!


O, my craftsman! give some healthy form to this whole,

draw this entire world, in one single, simple, and small composition


may  there be the shadows,

may  there be the sun that spreads over the green forest,

may there be the beauty that swings through this town,

may there be the skill that preserves that beauty in the city of immortals,

may there the oil lamp in my secluded hermitage, be the witness


my real comfort is in some new creation on daily basis,

on forgetting oneself in the luxury of that creation


whoever doesn’t find the source of the nectar under their  chest,

will never be able to quench the heart’s thirst


when the whole country gets tired of overwork

when the sun sets far beyond the hills in no time,

with that crimson in the sky, I will shut my eyelids peacefully

along your bank O Kali! I will arrive at Muktinath


Jhuma[9], my ever-youth temple courtesan in the Himalayas

whose exuberant tresses hang lushly on her back,

this very evening

lighting a divine lamp with yak[10] butter

will take me to the caverns of the extreme mountain


may not, the remnants of the sunrays on the mountain, remain fresh

may hide, the talismanic images of the day, under the shadows


would Muktinath[11]  himself sit

empty in meditation, static like a mountain

tying on Damodar`s head, the white constellation of seven stars.


[1] the sacred  river situated in western Nepal

[2] one of the famous mountain in western Nepal

[3] one of the top holy shrines for Hindu and Buddhist

[4] a revered stone

[5] one of the famous Hindu mythological sage

[6] one of the important Hindu mythological character

[7] One of the Hindu trinity of supreme godhead

[8] Hindu mythological city

[9] a girl surrendered to a temple to serve as the temple courtesan

[10] Himalayan cow

[11] lord Vishnu

Himal  khadka

Translation: Himal Khadka