Saturday, May 2, 2020

Translating Banalata Sen [Wikipedia]

The first line haajaar bochor dhore aami path haatitechi prithibir pothey is in present perfect continuous tense. Most translations have rendered this either into simple past tense or present perfect tense. Oblivious of the continuity of the act Martin Kirkman translated : A thousand years I have wandered upon the earth. Amitabha Mukerjee translated : A thousand years I have walked these paths. Sukanta Chaudhuri rendered : I have walked the roads across the earth's breast for a thousand years. Ananda Lal also used present perfect tense : I have walked the paths of earth for thousands of years. Now the translation by Joydeep Bhattacharya : I have walked earth's byways for millennia. Fakrul Alam followed suit by writing : For a thousand years I have walked the ways of the world.

On the contrary Clinton B. Seely used simple past tense : For thousands of years I roamed the paths of this earth. Joe Winter translated : For thousands of years Earth's path has been my path. This is in line with Jibanananda Das himself who translated like : Long I have been a wanderer of this world. Anjana Basu's translation is not comparable here and hence excluded.

It is Anupam Banerji who maintained the literal sense of the poem (1998) and wrote in translation : For ages I have been walking the paths of this earth. A recent translation by Arun Sarkar again considers present perfect continuous tense : For thousand years I have been walking all over the world. Recently, a translation by Shamik Bose, runs like 'For a thousand years I have been walking upon the bosom of my earth'.

In 2008, Clinton B. Seely improved on his original translation and used present perfect continuous tense.

Source : Wikipedia, 2 May 2020.

Can you translate the opening line too?