The pangs of pain which the clouds bear
Subside in a moment when they shed.
They wander here and there,
Like a bunch of novices
Copulating with the winds.
But the mother in throes
Her woes all over the sky,
Dimly remembers the time before she conceived.
Through lanes and alleys she tramples
The bulge in her belly,
To calm her intense hunger
With a mere handful.
When labour begins, her head holds a load,
And her eyes, a shadow of anxiety for food.
Under burning skies and a hot, breathless wind
Rise the infant’s first cries,
Saying: world, now I see you for myself.
Thus she delivers, and her hands
Set fiercely to work again.
Like the clouds, whose pangs
Take just a moment to subside.
Translated by Kumar Ketkar and Priya Adarkar