The optimist and the pessimist

കവിതകള്‍ (My poems), English

A poem I wrote during two different moods. The left part was written in 1987, while the right part was written in 1992.

Knock not at my door, my friend,
     Let me calmly sleep,
I haven’t miles to go for hunt,
     Nor any promise to keep.

Knock please at my door, my friend,
     I know when I should sleep,
I have a lot to go in front,
     And many a promise to keep.

I sought the words of learned men,
     But I was always wrong,
I felt like in a tiger’s den,
     I could not stand that long.

Don’t make me drink from another’s well,
     Let me choose my path,
Whether it leads to heaven or hell,
     To no one I have wrath.

Whatever I did want to learn —
     I was never taught;
Whatever I did long to earn —
     I have never got;

Whatever I do want to learn —
     I seek its rule and line;
Whatever I do long to earn —
     I snatch and make it mine;

Whenever I did fall to sin,
     I was always caught;
Whenever I was examined,
     They proved that I am naught;

Whenever am I caught for sin,
     I take it candidly;
Whenever am I examined,
     I take it sportively.

I always looked down, only found
     The bitter part of life;
The duties stroke me down to ground
     I could not stand that strife.

I always look up, only find
     The better part of life;
I learned to enjoy do my work,
     I don’t call it strife.