Sunday, January 03, 2010

1005 : Dead Man’s Clothes

How to deal with
a dead man’s clothes
I do not know.

You cannot wear, too soon,
a dead man’s clothes -
it might seem that you were waiting for them.

You cannot let them remain
at the dead man’s house, either -
it doesn’t feel natural
to maintain relationships
with the dead.

If you gave them away as charity;
traces of the dead
might approach you
in unexpected places
draped upon unexpected bodies.

Yes, you might destroy
a dead man’s clothes -
but your hands will quiver,
reluctant to destroy a dead man
again and again.

The dead man’s clothes
are not like his clothes
but like the dead man’s skin.

(Irandavanin aadaygal, Manushyaputhiran translated by Lakshmi Holstrom
- from the book Penguin Book of Tamil Poetry, The Rapids of a Great River, Pg 176)

Related Posts by Categories

Widget by Hoctro | DreamyDonkey

No comments: