Foto Enrique Moya

Rati Saxena (Indien / India)

Lebt in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. Dichterin, Übersetzerin, Sanskrit-Gelehrte, Direktorin des internationalen Kritya-Poetry Festivals in Indien.

Sie hat 11 Gedichtbände veröffentlicht und ist mit zahlreichen Preisen ausgezeichnet, zuletzt mit dem Naji Naaman’s Literary Prize 2016.

Ihre Gedichte wurden in 12 Sprachen übersetzt, zuletzt ins Chinesische, Estnische und Vietnamesische. Sie ist Gründungsmitglied des World Poetry Movements und Gast auf zahlreichen internationalen Festivals.

Freitag / Fr 28.10. - 20.30 Uhr
Länderschwerpunkt Indien / Focus India
Sonntag / Sun 30.10. - 13 Uhr, Podiumsgespräch / Panel

Lives in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. Rati is a poet, translator, Sanskrit scholar, Director of the international Kritya-Poetry Festival in India.

She has published 11 poetry books and has received various awards, latest: the Naji Naaman’s Literary Prize 2016.

Her poetry was translated into 12 languages, like Chinese, Estonian and Vietnamese. Sie ist Gründungsmitglied des World Poetry Movements und Gast auf zahlreichen internationalen Festivals.

My Sheet

That morning when I woke, I saw
a small hole in my sheet,
the result of being lost in sleep.
So I struggled with silken thread throughout the day
and by night had stitched a window
for glimpsing a few, new dreams.

The next day I woke to a new hole
and this time added paint to the thread.
Before dark I’d built a door.

My dreams could leave now and wander
instead of gazing out a window,
dreams freed to roam the entirety of the night.
Each morning brought new holes;
each day bustled with thread and paint.

Today my sheet is an enormous courtyard
with a banyan tree filled with birds with beaks like red stars,
though both sun and moon remain absent.

So I spend my mornings searching for holes
where a sun and moon might be woven,
not only in this galaxy
but also across
the many, layered others,

knowing at the end there’s a final hole
through which to exit
and join the great beyond

in a seamless realm of light.

The Wings of an Ant

They say an ant has no wings
and that even if she did, she couldn’t fly.

And if unable to fly, why suffer the pain of wings?

The ant’s death rides on her wings,
but death itself is flight.

The ant started to fly
by pale blue light, bending
her wings to the south,
an illusion of silence amidst noise.

Towards the yellow light, she flew
against her life,
carrying flight in her every cell.

She saw the seeds of flight
for the next generation.

Mother Used to Save

At any moment,
under any conditions, the storehouse
of mother was never empty,
she saved oils, grains, pickles, beans,
salt in clay pots, glass jars of jaggery,
all of it living for centuries
in her magic storeroom, and available
in an instant
without a single “Open, Sesame!”

Mother saved flesh, too:
on her waist and hips, for her
seven hungry children, born
one after another,
and for the next generation:
to love grandma’s soft, sweet feel.

And she saved stories, myths,
unknown rhythms, steps
for the grandchildren’s dreams,
a way of keeping her with them
after she’s long gone.

In her final moments, her last
breaths left her daughters a home,
through which she keeps dissolving
like a sugar packet into water.


Übersetzung / Translation Seth Michelson