A Poem by K.G. Sankarapillai

Dear Che

Dear Che,
you came to our university campus
in mid sixties
with a comrade and a modernist friend
with visuals of jungles past and present
with a vision of a new battle for justice.

Like a fresh wind of October
you joined us
moved us
renewed us
and smoothened our entry into history
with love, dreams and plans.

You told us about the sleeping rebel powers
of mountains and forests of the new minds;
quite often you talked of the day when
the Andes would become
the Sierra Maestra of America.

Our modernist friend said:
you are the red star over the world
tarnished by America;
you are the future of the world
crippled by America;
you are the Jesus of the modern age
crucified by America.

Although you remained evergreen in us
showed us the exit to the oceans
from the lyrical ponds of our
post Independent Indian youth;
the exit to the storm from the water lily breeze
of our weeping romantic poems;
dear doctor, you redefined us
living with us
living for us
living in us
passing the confidence of torrents into our deserts
weaving sunlit paths into our prodigal nights.

You brought world into our words
and future into our past.
You opened blast-furnaces for our ore.

This poem was Translated from Malayalam by A. Lakshmi. The poem was part of a anthology Che in Verse, edited by Garvin O’Toole and Georgina Gimenez which was published by Aflame Books. K.G.Sankarapillai has won the National Award for Poetry in India on two occasions.

courtesy AHRC

9 Responses to Dear Che – A poem by K.G. Sankarapillai

  1. Shaheen Sultan Dhanji says:

    Absolutely brilliant ! Che Guevara shall always live on. Here was a man of great conviction, honour and perserverance. His “motorcycle diaries” is an absolute beauty…His compassion for the lepers, struggle for the poor and belief were some prime example of a prodigious comrade !

    Thank you for such a wonderful translation.
    -ssd

  2. Vidrohi says:

    Very good poem.

    Apart from the motorcycle diaries, the “reminiscence of the Cuban revolution” is a very interesting book. The Bolivian Diaries are also interesting.

    Recently, 13 volumes of Che’s economic writings have been published in Havana. They are mostly in Spanish. Having read some reviews, I can help being intrigued to read the original works. This shows the depth of Che’s theoretical contributions. He was a complete revolutionary: romantically, practically, and ideologically.

  3. Melissik says:

    One afternoon, I was in the backyard hanging the laundry when an old, tired-looking dog wandered into the yard. I could tell from his collar and well-fed belly that he had a home. But when I walked into the house, he followed me, sauntered down the hall and fell asleep in a corner. An hour later, he went to the door, and I let him out. The next day he was back. He resumed his position in the hallway and slept for an hour.
    This continued for several weeks. Curious, I pinned a note to his collar: “Every afternoon your dog comes to my house for a nap. ”
    The next day he arrived with a different note pinned to his collar: “He lives in a home with ten children – he’s trying to catch up on his sleep.”

    I cried from laughter
    Sorry, if not left a message on Rules.

  4. Tina says:

    Heart touching poetry.

  5. […] 15, 2008 by Le Mystique I happened to read this short amusing story posted by a commentor on Raza Rumi’s blog. One afternoon, I was in the backyard hanging the laundry when an old, tired-looking […]

  6. poetrylover says:

    Love the poem :). I love reading poetry and writing it. Lately I’ve been posting a lot of love poems on http://www.unitedworldpoets.com. The site is running a free poetry contest this month that has a cash prize I’m hoping to win, wish me luck. Writing poetry is how I release my emotions.

  7. […] 09. A Poem by K.G. Sankarapillai , Jahane Rumi        Read here […]

  8. I am really inspired together with your writing talents as neatly as with the format for your blog. Is this a paid subject matter or did you modify it yourself? Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it is rare to see a great weblog like this one today..

  9. Saju says:

    Marvelous. Truly Che was a maverick. His martyrdom was for a a larger cause and that included not only for the freedom of Cuba from USA but even above that. We know that he relinquished his ministerial rank and joined the struggle for very common people of Bolivia, finally sacrificing his life. It’s not desirable to take up arms or lead armed struggle since it involves killing of fellow human beings but at times it’s justified when oppression of people crosses all limits.

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