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Translated from the Hindi by Sejal Arora


After everything has passed

Love will remain

Like creases, after lovemaking, on the bedding,

After death, like worldly remembrance,

Like earth lurking, covered in greenery

After being trampled by equestrians 

In between the summer-dried rocks of a waterfall,

               As in roots, remains moisture, trapped—

               In the end, too,

               Love will remain.

Not Just With Words

Not just with words,            

               Touching without a touch,                           

               Kissing without a kiss,            

               Embracing without encircling her in my arms,

               From yonder, unfolding her petal by petal            

               Rendering her visible, without seeing 

I spoke to her.

Ashok Vajpeyi (1941-) is a Hindi-language poet, essayist, literary-cultural critic, apart from being a noted cultural and arts administrator, and a former civil servant. He was chairman, Lalit Kala Akademi, 2008–2011. He has published over 23 books of poetry, criticism and art, and was awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1994 for his poetry collection Kahin Nahin Wahin. His notable poetry collections include Shaher Ab Bhi Sambhavana Hai (1966), Tatpurush (1986), Bahuri Akela (1992), Ibarat Se Giri Matrayen, Ummeed ka Doosra Naam (2004) and Vivaksha (2006); besides this he has also published works on literary and art criticism: Filhal, Kuchh Poorvagrah, Samay se Bahar, Kavita ka Galp and Sidhiyan Shuru Ho Gayi Hain.

Sejal Arora is a 20-year-old bilingual poet, currently studying English literature at Delhi University and reading Hindustani poetry. She passionately believes in art as a means of resistance and is dwelling deep in Partition and Protest Literature.

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