Thursday, April 19, 2007

Let's go and see if such things can be true

The Miracle Man

That doctor's amazing! They say the old sinner
Puts food in his mouth when he's eating his dinner,
And also feels hungry if starved of his bread,
And closes his eyes when he sleeps in his bed!
He walks with his feet always treading the ground,
His eyes can see things, and his ears can hear sound.
On his shoulders, they tell me, his head you can view:
O let's go and see if such things can be true!

– Sukumar Ray

(Translated from the Bengali by Sukanta Chaudhuri)

Sukumar Ray (1887-1923) could be called the Indian Lewis Carroll. His nonsense verse is as known in Bengal as Mother Goose is in the English-speaking world. His son was the great film director Satyajit Ray (1921-1992), also a writer; the third generation in a family of multi-talents.

More on Sukumar Ray at At Home, Writing.

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