SHE IS GONE FOREVER, A POEM IN ENGLISH BY RANJANA SHARAN SINHA, GERMAN TRANSLATION BY DR. APRILIA ZANK

“There was an old belief that in the embers
Of all things their primordial form exists,
And cunning alchemists
Could re-create the rose with all its members
From its own ashes, but without the bloom,
Without the lost perfume
Ah me! what wonder-working, occult science
Can from the ashes in our hearts once more
The rose of youth restore?
What craft of alchemy can bid defiance
To time and change, and for a single hour
Renew this phantom-flower?”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


Thanks to Aprilia for the introduction to Ranjana, a new-to-me poet. It’s an introduction I think you’ll appreciate as well. / J.D.
.
In my journey through life,
I reach an alien territory–
The scarlet gulmohars
with their flamboyant flames
fall on the ground:
A sense of fall silently comes!
llllll
Saddened by
‘ the touch of earthly years’
A boundless ocean forced along
by the winds of halcyon days,
surges up within me,
provoking nostalgia!
.
Behind the morphing
face and body,
I look for my lost self:
A woman without
lines or signs of aging–
Vibrant and agile,
appears before me.
.
I try to loop my
arms through hers,
but she flies and goes forever
making me feel like
A mass of rocks
after recent rainfall:
Oh, the pleasant petrichor persists!
.
My bygone days like
pale effervescent wine
hiss in the flute of
my advancing years,
whispering with the mesmerising bubbles!
.
– Dr. Ranjana Sharan Sinha
.
© 2019, poem in English and German, Ranjana Sinha
.

Sie ist für immer verschwunden!

Auf meiner Reise durch das Leben

Erreiche ich eine fremde Landschaft –

Die scharlachroten Flammenbäume

mit ihren strahlenden Farben

fallen zu Boden:

Ein Gefühl von Herbst nähert sich leise!

.

Betrübt von

“der Berührung der irdischen Jahre”

Spüre ich ein inneres Grollen –

Ein grenzenloser Ozean gezwungen

bei den Sturmwinden der halkyonischen Tage,

strömt in mir empor,

überschwemmt mich mit Nostalgie

.

Hinter der Verwandlung

von Gesicht und Körper,

auf der Suche nach meinem verlorenen Ich:

Eine Frau ohne

Falten oder Zeichen des Alterns –

Flink und lebensfroh,

erscheint vor mir.

.

Ich versuche, ihre Arme

.

mit meinen zu umklammern

aber sie fliegt und verschwindet für immer

und ich fühle mich wie

ein Haufen von Steinen

nach frischem Regen:

Oh, der liebliche Petrichor verweilt!

.

Meine vergangenen Tage wie

heller, schäumender Champagner,

zischen in der Schaumweinflöte

meiner zunehmenden Jahre,

und flüstern

mit bezaubernden Perlen!

– Dr. Ranjana Sharan Sinha

Translated by Dr. Aprilia Zank


DR. RANJANA SHARAN SINHA is a former professor in English at Shree Binzani City College, Nagpur, Maharashtra (India) and is well- known poet, author and literary critic. Dr. Sinha’s PhD thesis was on ” Sri Aurobindo and the Epic tradition”. She is a recognised voice in Indian Poetry in English and has received an accolade from the former President of India A.P.J. Abdul Kalam for her poem “ Mother Nature”.

Dr. Shinha’s poems, short stories, articles and research papers published in reputed dailies, magazines, e-zines and archives at national and international levels.Her poems have found place in prestigious Sahitya Akademi’s journal lndian Literature and international anthogies.Authored and published 06 books in different genres and 50 research papers.The books are:1.Spring Zone (Collection of Poems and Haiku); 2. Midnight Sun ( Collection of Short Stories); 3. Nature in the Poetry of William Wordsworth and Sumitra Nandan Pant ( Criticism); 4. Feminism: Times and Tides ( Historiographical and theoretical  commentary on Feminism covering eleven chapters) 5. Different Dimensions (Compilation of Research Papers) 6. Scents and Shadows ( Collection of Poems) 7. Rhymes for Children ( Collection of rhymes- to be published).Completed  UGC-sponsored MRP on comparative literature.

Dr. Shinha has received awards for her outstanding contributions to literature: Best Poet Award by Poets International, Bangalore; Rashtriya Pratibha Samman by Akhil Bhartiya Sahitya Sangam,Udaipur; Best Citizens of lndia by lnternational Publishing House, New Delhi; T.G.Deshmukh Best Teacher Award by Nagpur Shikshan Mandal, Nagpur; Brij Sahityamani Samman by Brajlok Sahitya-Kala-Sanskriti Academy, Agra; Hindi Bhasha Bhushan by Shri Govind Hindi Seva Samiti, Muradabad; Chitransh Kul Bhaskar Samman, Bilaspur(CG); Felicitated at lnternational Poetry Festival, Guntur.Featured poet of Pentasi B World Friendship Poetry 2019.

She is associated with a number of literary organisations and Poetry groups.Presented papers in many national and international seminars and conferences.Research Supervisor,RTM Nagpur University.


DR. APRILIA ZANK is a lecturer for Creative Writing and Translation Theory from Germany. She received her PhD degree in Literature and Psycholinguistics for her thesis THE WORD IN THE WORD Literary Text Reception and Linguistic Relativity, at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, where she started her academic career as a lecturer. She is also a poet, a translator and the editor of two anthologies: the English–German anthology poetry tREnD Eine englisch-deutsche Anthologie zeitgenössischer Lyrik, LIT Verlag, Germany, 2010, and the anthology POETS IN PERSON at the Glassblower (Indigo Dreams Publishing, UK, 2014).

Aprilia writes verse in English and German, and was awarded a prize at the “Vera Piller” Poetry Contest in Zurich. Her poetry collection, TERMINUS ARCADIA, was 2nd Place Winner at the Twowolvz Press Poetry Chapbook Contest 2013. BAREFOOT TO ARCADIA, her bilingual collection of poems translated in Telugu by the eminent Indian poet and translator Dr. L. S. R. Prasad. was launched in 2018 in Hyderabad, India.

Aprilia has received wide recognition in both western and eastern countries for her merits and achievements. She is active in many literary and artistic groups, a frequent judge in poetry and photography competitions, and a member of the editorial boards of advisors of prestigious literary platforms such as Our Poetry Archive (OPA), Sahitya Anand Literary Journal and Athena, Journal on Humanities and Social Sciences. In 2018, she was awarded the title “Dr. Aprilia Zank – Germany Beat Poet Laureate”, by the National Beat Poetry Foundation (USA).

Aprilia is also a passionate photographer. To her, photography means the attempt to get a new insight into the essence of things. She has organised many photography exhibitions at the Ludwig Maximilian University and other cultural centres in Munich. Many of her images are prize winners and have been selected for poetry book covers.



ABOUT

Testimonials

Disclosure

Facebook

Twitter

Poet and writer, I was once columnist and associate editor of a regional employment publication. I currently run this site, The Poet by Day, an information hub for poets and writers. I am the managing editor of The BeZine published by The Bardo Group Beguines (originally The Bardo Group), a virtual arts collective I founded.  I am a weekly contributor to Beguine Again, a site showcasing spiritual writers. My work is featured in a variety of publications and on sites, including: Levure littéraure, Ramingo’s PorchVita Brevis Literature,Compass Rose, Connotation PressThe Bar None GroupSalamander CoveSecond LightI Am Not a Silent PoetMeta / Phor(e) /Play, and California Woman. My poetry was recently read byNorthern California actor Richard Lingua for Poetry Woodshed, Belfast Community Radio. I was featured in a lengthy interview on the Creative Nexus Radio Show where I was dubbed “Poetry Champion.”


The BeZine: Waging the Peace, An Interfaith Exploration featuring Fr. Daniel Sormani, Rev. Benjamin Meyers, and the Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi among others

“What if our religion was each other. If our practice was our life. If prayer, our words. What if the temple was the Earth. If forests were our church. If holy water–the rivers, lakes, and ocean. What if meditation was our relationships. If the teacher was life. If wisdom was self-knowledge. If love was the center of our being.” Ganga White, teacher and exponent of Yoga and founder of White Lotus, a Yoga center and retreat house in Santa Barbara, CA

“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.” Lucille Clifton

Not in a Movie, a poem by Aprilia Zank


I saw Death

with my own eyes

not in a movie

not in a poem

not in Wagner’s “Tristan und Isolde”

but in my own flesh and blood

and although I still go

to the supermarket

to the butcher’s

to the doctor’s to check

my blood pressure

the sugar in my blood

the neurons in my brain

although I drink my glass of red wine every evening

although I reach the climax when I copulate

I know IT is there

in the back of my head

and I shout to you out there

to send me prayers

good vibes

positive thoughts

but all I hear is

the echo of my own words

filling your mouths

when you shout back

and beg for mercy

and all I can do is

show you my bare hands

and give them to you

to read your own story

in the lines of my palms.

© 2017, Aprilia Zank 


DR. APRILIA ZANK is a lecturer for Creative Writing and Translation in the Department of Languages and Communication at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany, where she received her PhD degree in Literature and Psycholinguistics for her thesis THE WORD IN THE WORD Literary Text Reception and Linguistic Relativity.

Aprilia is also a poet, a translator and the editor of two anthologies: the English–German anthology poetry tREnD Eine englisch-deutsche Anthologie zeitgenössischer Lyrik, LIT Verlag, Berlin, 2010, and the anthology POETS IN PERSON at the Glassblower (Indigo Dream Publishing, April, 2014). She writes verse in English and German, and was awarded a distinction at the “Vera Piller” Poetry Contest in Zurich. Her poetry collection, TERMINUS ARCADIA, was 2nd Place Winner at the Twowolvz Press Poetry Chapbook Contest 2013. Aprilia Zank is also a passionate photographer: many of her images are prize-winners and several have been selected for poetry book covers.


ABOUT THE POET BY DAY

“Dr. Jernail S. Anand (Poet), Writing in the Virtual World” by Aprilia Zank, Ph.D.


POETRY & SOUL IN CYBERSPACE

Living more and more trapped in cyberspace (statistics can attest that we spend daily more hours in the virtual than in the real world), we may at a certain point be inclined to demonise it, but the fact of the matter is that the virtual space does offer us an unparalleled range of opportunities. Through it, I have been bestowed the privilege of coming into contact with a large number of amazing personalities from various fields of culture and creativity, among whom I am happy to mention Dr. Jernail S. Anand, an Indian poet, philosopher, teacher, educator, to name just the main aspects of his proliferous career.

Dr. Aprilia Zank

Due to both my profession and my passion for literature and art, I had been familiar with creative people before the Internet, but it was the sort of closeness which one finds in the seclusion of libraries, museums, university halls and the like. With the new generations ‘born’ with notebooks, tablets or smartphones in their hands, the encounter with knowledge or creativity acquires new coordinates. The notion of reception needs to be reshaped and reconstructed. What sounds like self-evidence at first view needs though critical questioning. Do we really experience and process literary and artistic contents in a new way in the virtual space? Does it make a difference if I hold a paper book in my hands, or if I read it on a screen, or is its impact on me the same? Perhaps we need indeed to pay new consideration to Marshall McLuhan’s declaration that “the medium is the message.” Extensive research is necessary, and scientists of all domains are busy attempting to transmute their findings into relevant statistic data, but beyond all scholarly devices are the unique literature and art recipients with their particular premises for the reception and processing of literary writings and of works of art.

My encounter with Dr. Anand has taken place – so far and I hope it will change soon – in the virtual space only. I have had no opportunity to meet him in person, yet I have the feeling that we are good old friends. Furthermore, we both belong to a tremendous network of friends and friends’ friends who are in a permanent and immediate encounter and exchange of information, opinions and critical views. For there is no denial of the fact that accessibility of all types is practically borderless in cyberspace. A sheer number of readers can and do access Dr. Anand’s poems, essays and philosophical work in bits or as full books on the Internet. This unparalleled intercourse occurs within our beloved social networks in which communication is possible at any time, from every place and with everybody. But what sounds like a tremendous achievement in general and a huge chance for writers and artists in particular comes at a price. It is precisely the easiness of accessibility that renders the encounter with e-media contents accidental, fugitive, and often enough perfunctory. Under the ‘burden’ of the stupendous offer we are confronted with in cyberspace, we race from stimulus to stimulus in a feverish attempt to absorb as much information as possible. Under these circumstances, we run the risk of being superficial in our assimilation and, accordingly, far from optimal in our response.

Dr. Jernail S. Anand

Dr. Jernail S. Anand

Now, Dr. Anand is a renowned personality with a remarkable retinue of followers and admirers who always search for his presence and newest publications in the virtual world. And he does indeed regale them with exquisite poetry, thought-provoking quotes, or deep-reaching philosophical musings. The readers’ response is there, but it has evolved into a new language, semiotic to a great extent. We use ‘like’, ‘love’, ‘angry’, ‘sad’ and more signs to save time, or in the best case, we type ‘excellent’, ‘profound’ ‘congratulations’, to attest due consideration. Can this be a satisfactory type of feedback? On looking at Dr. Anand’s literary items shared the day I am writing this article, I spot a poem titled “HOW POOR IS THIS LIFE”. A quick analysis reveals that a response is there: 23 readers have liked and/or loved the poem, two have provided comments of one and of four words respectively, but that is about all. I miss some, to my mind, almost compulsory remarks, e.g. a reference to the Eliotian echo of the lines:

I write so much yet the feeling …
of half fulfilment stays.

or a few words of appreciation for the exquisite metaphors below:

I could not digest the winds
I could not drink the seas

The poet further complains about the unsatisfactory living we are trapped in:

Life! How poor you are!

It is, of course, the spiritual poverty he is is weary of, a recurring theme in Dr. Anand’s writings and a major potential starting point for a debate among the readers of the poem. Decay of traditional values, lack of genuine communication with one’s own kind, failure in the attempt to connect with God – it is all there craving for introspection and deliberation. But here, too, things seem to be doomed to fail to meet expectations:

Things remained half loved
Hence half lived.

Is there any chance left for mankind to find its way back to primeval joy? In the poem “JOYS PAINS”, Dr. Anand emphasises the inextricable duality of joy/pain by using stylistic devices such as capitalisation and the juxtaposition of words with no punctuation, thus almost creating a proper name with a single ‘signifié’. The last three lines convey one more cry-out-loud testimony of the shallowness of inter-human relationships in a world devoid of true communication:

Nobody listens to the shrieks
Which issue from silent lips
Coated with red smiles

A look at the feedback on these major issues present in the poem reveals a poor echo to such a challenging piece of writing: a few semiotic ‘likes’, a ‘sad’ sign, and a positive remark illustrated by a line of the poem. No truly deep consideration offered to major existential questions posited in other poems either. Weirdly enough, this is by no means lack of appreciation or interest, since Dr. Anand is well-known as one of the most widely acknowledged contemporary Indian poets and philosophers. It is rather a peculiar aspect of the nature of reception in this kaleidoscopic world which is the virtual space. Aside from the already mentioned fast-paced character of this medium, which urges us to move on and on to the next items of interest, further components come into play or better said interplay among its users. Visibility and transparency, which per se are positive features of the virtual space, may become inhibitory under the realisation that people ‘can read your mind’ when you express your ideas, opinions and the like on various issues. Direct comparison with other minds can occur, with an uncertain outcome. A reason for many to refrain from a too obvious display of their own facets of spirit or intellect.

Luckily, Dr. Anand’s prolific work has been extensively and skilfully dealt with by scholars who have assuredly taken more than a glance at his literary and philosophical writings. For there is no doubt that thorough reading and rigorous research is still being practised, even in our high-speed world and in the fugacious virtual reality.

Summing up, I think there is no point in trying to solve the quandary whether the virtual world with its social networks are a blessing or a curse. Living without it has become unthinkable, so why not make the best of it. The possibility to display your work and creativity in it, to enjoy borderless visibility and access, and to have the chance of getting feedback from the most unexpected corners of the virtual but also of the real world is priceless. And in this respect I am grateful to have had the opportunity to meet the tremendous personality of Dr. J. S. Anand in this scintillating world. This notwithstanding, I am of course looking forward to an early encounter with the man in person.

– Aprilia S. Zank
October 12th, 2017
Munich, Germany

© 2017, essay and photo portraits, Aprilia S. Zank; Originally published in Galaktika Poetike “ATUNIS” and republished here with Aprilia’s permission


DR. APRILIA ZANK is a lecturer for Creative Writing and Translation in the Department of Languages and Communication at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany, where she received her PhD degree in Literature and Psycholinguistics for her thesis THE WORD IN THE WORD Literary Text Reception and Linguistic Relativity. She is also a poet, a translator and the editor of two anthologies: the English–German anthology poetry tREnD Eine englisch-deutsche Anthologie zeitgenössischer Lyrik, LIT Verlag, Berlin, 2010, and the anthology POETS IN PERSON at the Glassblower (Indigo Dream Publishing, April, 2014). She writes verse in English and German, and was awarded a distinction at the “Vera Piller” Poetry Contest in Zurich. Her poetry collection, TERMINUS ARCADIA, was 2nd Place Winner at the Twowolvz Press Poetry Chapbook Contest 2013. Aprilia Zank is also a passionate photographer: many of her images are prize-winners and several have been selected for poetry book covers.


DR. JERNAIL S. ANANAD is the author of two dozen books in English poetry, fiction and non-fiction, Dr. J. S. Anand is an established name in the field of education, philosophy, and spirituality. Born on 15th Jan., 1955, he hails from village Longowal [Distt. Sangrur,Punjab, India]. He got his school education from the best schools in Ludhiana, the highly industrialized city of Punjab, famous for its hosiery and cycle parts industry. He was a student of famous Govt. College, Ludhiana, during his graduate studies, and he did his M.A. in English literature from Punjabi University, Patiala, securing 2nd position in the University. His doctoral thesis, submitted to Panjab University, Chandigarh, was on “A Comparative study of Mysticism in the poetry of Walt Whitman and Prof. Puran Singh”. Dr. Anand is an educationist, an able administrator, a talented writer, a novelist, a poet, and a philosopher, who is a multi-dimensional personality, particularly, in view of his interest in Saving the Earth. He planted around 20 thousand saplings in and around Bathinda. He has also delivered lecturers on Spirituality, Human Rights, and Moral Values. “We are inheritors of the wealth of this earth and this sky, and it belongs equally to us all” – Anand

A Million Desitines is Dr. Anand’s English language collection.


ABOUT THE POET BY DAY

 

THREE by the mighty Aprilia Zank

Poet, Writer, Linguist, Photographer and Educator, Aprilia Zank at play
Poet, Writer, Linguist, Photographer and Educator, Aprilia Zank at play

Malajusted

I had put on
my reddest dress
to spread brightness
on my arrival
but these women were rabid
had crawled to the drug locker
with their pee bags
trailing behind
and their white gowns
open at the back
for ease of examination
I tried to stop them
screamed for the nurse
but they were already
devouring
the coloured pills
and celebrating
their ephemeral victory
over doomed
maladjustment

untitled

this is an ugly poem
this is a wicked poem

this is a poem
about corpses lined up
in antiseptic bags
in the basement

this is a poem
about weary customers
drawing numbers
for refundable purgatories
on the ground-floor

this is a poem
about a young girl
on the third floor
pulling tight
at the pink of her hoodie
to conceal
the baldness of her head

this is a poem
about an old titan
on the ninth floor
reading instructions
how to grow titan vertebrae
from his Phoenix wings

this is a poem
about the twelfth floor
where hurrying visitors
carry intricate flower bouquets
for newborn cherubs

this is a poem
about hell and heaven
this is a love poem

Tintagel refunctioned

King Arthur’s men
having reached a certain age
are sitting
in the renovated Tintagel
two or three at a table
not round but square

flipping
through glossy magazines
peeping
at anorexic models
unaffordable sports cars
fitted zen gardens

considering
past steps
in hard to reshape dust
decisions not taken
missed opportunities
acts
that could have been done better

trying
to tame becquerels
to conceal
intimations of diapers

having fought
so many battles
against knightly opponents
looking straight
into their eyes –

but now
the sniper
hits from the inside
with no warning
except for occasional
hardly detectable
tracks of occult blood

– Aprilia Zank

These three poems were Aprilia’s response to last Wednesday’s writing prompt: Mighty (that’s you and me) …

DR. APRILIA ZANK is a lecturer for Creative Writing and Translation in the Department of Languages and Communication at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany, where she received her PhD degree in Literature and Psycholinguistics for her thesis THE WORD IN THE WORD Literary Text Reception and Linguistic Relativity. She is also a poet, a translator and the editor of two anthologies: the English–German anthology poetry tREnD Eine englisch-deutsche Anthologie zeitgenössischer Lyrik, LIT Verlag, Berlin, 2010, and the anthology POETS IN PERSON at the Glassblower (Indigo Dream Publishing, April, 2014). She writes verse in English and German, and was awarded a distinction at the “Vera Piller” Poetry Contest in Zurich. Her poetry collection, TERMINUS ARCADIA, was 2nd Place Winner at the Twowolvz Press Poetry Chapbook Contest 2013. Aprilia Zank is also a passionate photographer: many of her images are prize-winners and several have been selected for poetry book covers.

Aprilia is a friend of and frequent guest contributor to The BeZine. You can find more poetry by Aprilia in the last two editions.

COMING TO THIS SITE SOON: A review of The Word in the Word Literary Text Reception and Linguistic Relativity (don’t let the title throw you) along with an interview of Aprilia.

©2016, poems and photograph (published here with permission), Aprilia Zank, All rights reserved