Experiments with Translation

Translating life's journey in poetry, prose and pictures

śatakatrayam 2.10: nūnam hi te kavivarā (we all know that)

नूनं हि ते कविवरा विपरितवाचो
ये नित्यमाहुरबला इति कामिनीस्ता: ।
याभिर्विलोलतरतारकदृष्टिपातै:
शक्रादयोऽपि विजितास्त्वबला: कथं ता: ।।१०।।
शृङ्गारशतके

we all know that
the great poets who
constantly label them ‘weak’
are out of their minds.
no, they are beautiful women.
when they cast their bewildered glances
they conquer even
indra and the other gods.
and they’re called ‘weak’?
hah! ||10||
śṛṅgāraśataka

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śatakatrayam 2.9: kuṇkumapaṇka (her body is dusted)

कुङ्कुमपङ्ककलङ्कितदेहा गौरपयोधरकम्पितहारा ।
नूपुरहंसरणत्पदपद्मा कं न वशीकुरुते भुवि रामा ।।९।।
शृङ्गारशतके

her body is dusted with powdered saffron,
a pearl necklace rests on her fair breasts,
and the anklets on her lotus feet
resound with the charm of a goose’s walk.
which man on earth does
such a charming woman
not bewitch? ||9||
śṛṅgāraśataka

śatakatrayam 2.8: etāścaladvalaya- (with the clink-clink of bangles)

एताश्चलद्वलयसंहतिमेखलोत्थ-
झंकारनूपुररवाहृतराजहंस्य: ।
कुर्वन्ति कस्य न मनो विवशं तरुण्यो
वित्रस्तमुग्धहरिणीसदृशै: कटाक्षै: ।।८।।
शृङ्गारशतके

with the clink-clink of bangles,
jingle-jingle of jeweled belts,
and chink-chink of anklets,
the young women drowned out the
pitter-patter of the geese.
whose minds can they not
seduce
with their sidelong glances,
much like a deer’s,
enchanting, yet terrified? ||8||
śṛṅgāraśataka

 

śatakatrayam 2.7: draṣṭavyeṣu kimuttamaṃ (is there a sight more bewitching)

द्रष्टव्येषु किमुत्तमं मृगदृश: प्रेमप्रसन्नं मुखं
घ्रातव्येष्वपि किं तदास्यपवन: श्राव्येषु किं तद्वच: ।
किं खाद्येषु तदोष्ठपल्लवरस: स्पृश्येषु किं तद्वपु-
र्ध्येयं किं नवयौवनं सहृदय़ै: सर्वत्र तद्विभ्रमा: ।।७।।
शृङ्गारशतके

is there a sight more bewitching
than the doe-eyed girl’s face,
beaming with love?
is there a smell more fragrant
than her breath on my face?
is there a sound more mellifluous
than her whispered words?
is there a favor more delectable
than her luscious lips?
is there a feeling more tender
than the touch of her body?
do connoisseurs need to contemplate
on tender youth?
can they experience
anything else? ||7||
śṛṅgāraśataka

śatakatrayam 2.6: smitaṃ kiṃchinmugdham (her smile, a little childlike)

स्मितं किंचिन्मुग्धं सरलतरलो दृष्टिविभव:
परिस्पन्दो वाचामभिनवविलासोक्तिसरस: ।
गतानामारम्भ: किसलयितलीलापरिकर:
स्पृशन्त्यास्तारुण्यं किमिव न हि रम्यं मृगदृश: ।।६।।
नीतिशतके

her smile, a little childlike.
her glance, direct, yet quivering.
her words, hush-hush and honeyed,
in revealing blooming romances.
the step of her walk,
charming like the opening of buds.
is there anything that is not seductive
about a doe-eyed girl
at the cusp of adulthood?