The Destination

Here is a loose translation of a Marathi poem by B. B. Borkar, a poet with deep sensibilities and a zest for life. It’s almost impossible to translate some of his works, for they are rooted in the local culture, but at times he touches a chord that’s universal. I’m sure someone else might have done more justice to this poem in particular, but then I’ve waited long enough for that 🙂

This poem is meant as a monologue by an accomplished elder person to someone who’s just starting his life’s mission, and who apparently looks upto the former. The rest should be self-explanatory — even this but I’m not too happy with the translation, so thought I’d give a glimpse of the impressions that I had from the original…

No, don’t wait anymore for me
We must part our ways here
Shadows have cast their spell
On the long roads that I’ve traveled

I’ve basked in many a moonlight
Only the shadows fascinate me now
I’ve enthralled people with my songs
(But) only the silence enthralls me now

You must taste the charms of fame
It has an endearing shine
(But) I’m mesmerized
By that that’s way beyond

there, is the coolness of the moonlight
And trees filled with the glow of fireflies
Like a mind that shines from inside
While utter darkness surrounds it

Follow the roads where they take you
Eventually you’ll reach (me) here
(For) however twisted and tortured a road
It rests right here …


20 thoughts on “The Destination

  1. asuph says:

    thanks everyone…

    i notice that everyone seems to have liked different parts of the poem. tells me a bit about the original poem!

    topkapi, sure… i’d be doing that in this space, whenever i feel something needs to be translated…

    ssm… the original poem has the mood very well underlined, so much that even my translation somehow managed not to miss it..


  2. anonymous says:

    Hi asuph,
    Neat one, but I have the disappointment of being ignorant of the original.I have a question for you though, does Borkar also cite it as ‘monologue of accomplished elder person’? or is it a just one pick from a narrative-series? because, it is not very hard to see destination as death, esp with that ending line, in which case the context was not needed .That in turn reminds me of your other ‘Death’poem? why the flirting??
    as ever

  3. asuph says:


    no idea how borkar sites it, or even intended… i don’t even know which collection it belongs to…

    death is of course one possible way to look at it. but i have my doubts.. very strong doubts… and maybe I’ve felled here as a translator. it’s not a death poem as far as I trust my understanding of the original… vairaagya, a sanskrit word might come close to it — but it has a tinge of renunciation… this is not really renunciation but a stage where the very concept of renouncing seems irrelevant…

    now, i’m prolly being too cryptic…

    there is no flirting 😉 trust me.

    anyways…. thanks for visiting…


  4. Jidnesh says:

    i was just going through google found this link. Went through page its a nice poem from a father to his son. I m a maharashtrian, proud to see such an appreciation for our thoughts through poems though translated. Many more writers and poets remains undiscovered keep putting up such poems.

  5. Jidnesh says:

    Yes, I agree. I went through it one more time and it seem different again when read. May be it really is situation based poem, as one may be in different thoughts at different times. So every time you read, what going on the mind gets related to it.

    Might be confusing, but its really a good piece of words brought together.

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