Nepal-Amerika Express

Written: 2058 vikram samvat [2001];
Original Title: Nepaal-Amerikaa Ekspres;
Translated: from the Nepali by Mary Des Chene;
Transcribed: for marxists.org August, 2002.

Nepal-Amerika Express

        just lifted off

carrying a bushelful

        of my Nepali heart

Jam-packed with travellers

by way of Delhi, London

        destination Washington

arrives in a flash

        returns to my land.

Hop on anyplace

        Birtamod, Golbazar, Mahendranagar, Kathmandu

Packed with the stuff of many homes,

        many minds

Nepal-Amerika Express

        just lifted off

carrying a bushelful

        of my Nepaliness

Jomolongmo crammed

        into Sagarmatha's trunk

Defenseless Newar 'Maa'

                Magar 'Moi'

                Kirant 'Yamaa'

                Maithil 'Mai'

tucked inside the 'Aamaa' palanquin

Rodi, Deuda, Dhaan

        folk dances squashed

        in overflowing baskets

Accents spill over

        from shoulder-poled loads

Dark of night, dusk or dawn

        morning noon and night

we're packing load after load

        in the cargo hold

        of Nepal-Amerika Express

And like the lifeless portrait of a beggar

sordid spectacle in the making

in a London museum

        the countless facets of my dwelling place.

On every return

        Nepal-Amerika Express

         descending by day upon my home

'Mount Ebharest', 'Mommy' and 'Dyaddy'

        stepping off the Express by night

along with multinational Pipalment Companies

'Dance Clubs' and 'Break Dances'

'Nyuj' for reporters

'Vyujharu' for experts

'Intartainment' for teens

'Dokumentharu' for leaders!

With nary a cry

without hesitation

without resistance

not even pausing

        to cleanse the taint

        of spirit's demise

so proudly 'loading'

upon Nepal-Amerika Express

        all the fragrant aromas

        all the identities

        that fill our hearts and souls

we go on creating

        a parasite country

composing, without prejudice

        with national consensus

the history

        of our own death

Are we waging

        an ongoing 'mubhment'

                of national resistance?

And so, step by step

        to ashes

my entire identity

the soul and being

        of my land

Look there ...

        Nepal-Amerika Express about to lift off


carrying a bushelful

        of Nepali heart

by way of Delhi, London

        destination Washington.



* Jomolongmo: name of Sagarmatha in Tibetan and many Tibeto-Burman languages of Nepal. Jomolongmo/Sagarmatha in turn renamed 'Mount Everest' by English speakers.

Aamaa: the word for 'mother' in Nepali, the official and dominant national language of Nepal. Newari, Magar, Kirant, Maithili: a few of the many minority nationality languages of Nepal.

'-haru': plural suffix in Nepali. e.g., 'vyujharu' = views.