Where dost thou stand behind them all,...
Language: English after the Bangla (Bengali)
Where dost thou stand behind them all, my lover,
hiding thyself in the shadows?
They push thee and pass thee by on the dusty road,
taking thee for naught.
I wait here weary hours spreading my offerings for thee,
while passers-by come and take my flowers,
one by one, and my basket is nearly empty.
The morning time is past, and the noon.
In the shade of evening my eyes are drowsy with sleep.
Men going home glance at me
and smile and fill me with shame.
I sit like a beggar maid,
drawing my skirt over my face,
and when they ask me, what it is I want,
I drop my eyes and answer them not.
Oh, how, indeed, could I tell them that for thee I wait,
and that thou hast promised to come.
How could I utter for shame
that I keep for my dowry this poverty.
Ah, I hug this pride in the secret of my heart.
I sit on the grass and gaze upon the sky
and dream of the sudden splendour of thy coming -
all the lights ablaze, golden pennons flying over thy car,
and they at the roadside standing agape,
when they see thee come down from thy seat
to raise me from the dust,
and set at thy side this ragged beggar girl
a-tremble with shame and pride,
like a creeper in a summer breeze.
But time glides on and still
no sound of the wheels of thy chariot.
Many a procession passes by with noise
and shouts and glamour of glory.
Is it only thou who wouldst stand
in the shadow silent and behind them all?
And only I who would wait and weep
and wear out my heart in vain longing?
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Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
[ None yet in the database ]
Available translations, adaptations, and transliterations (if applicable):
- GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , title unknown, copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Text added to the website: 2010-11-03.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:06
Line count: 37
Word count: 292
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