Bilingual Poem: Neelam Saxena Chandra

Neelam Saxena Chandra

Hey! Dancing girl! 
From where did you get that poise?
Were you a pirouetting peahen
Born in disguise?

When I glance at your photograph
I feel that you will just come out;
Watch at my unsteady swaying,
And, to be better at my steps, shout!

I wonder about the great sculptor
Who chiselled you with such perfection;
Every expression he has captured
With so much of adoration!

Was he in love with you?
Or was it just a piece or art?
You did have something in you oh dancing princess,
That even time couldn’t discard!

I have just a question to ask you dear-
Tell me, about bangles on your arm left 
Was your choice asked, or was it sculptor’s delight,
Or you were a mere puppet?


ओ! खूबसूरत नर्तकी!
तुमने वो नजाकत कहाँ से पाई?
क्या तुम एक झूमती मोरनी थीं
जिसकी रूह थी तुममें समाई?

जब भी नज़र पड़ती है तुम्हारे चित्र पर
लगता है कि बस निकल ही आओगी;
मेरे असंतुलित से थिरकने को देखोगी
और मुझे मेरी अदा बेहतर करने को चिल्लाओगी!

सोचती हूँ कि कौन था वो मूर्तिकार
जिसने तुम्हें इतनी खूबसूरती से ढाला?
उसने तुम्हारी हर अदा को
कितने प्यार से है सम्भाला!

क्या वो तुमसे मुहब्बत करने लगा था?
या सिर्फ कलाकृति थीं तुम उसके लिए?
कुछ तो है तुममें ओ नृत्य की मल्लिका 
जो मिटाना मुश्किल था वक़्त के भी लिए!

एक प्रश्न है प्रिय जो मुझे सताता है
तुम्हारे बाएँ हाथ में क्यों वो अनगिनत चूड़ियों थीं?
क्या तुम्हारी चाहत पूछी गयी थी, या शिल्पकार की चाहत थी, 
या तुम महज़ एक कठपुतली थीं?

Bio: Neelam Saxena Chandra, a 1992 batch IRSEE officer, has written 6 novels, 8 short story collections, 38 poetry collections besides 14 children’s books. She is a record holder with the Limca Book of Records for having the highest number of publications in a year (2015). She has won many national and international awards. She was listed in the Forbes list as one of the most popular seventy-eight authors in the country in 2014.

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