Goirick Brahmachari is a writer based in New Delhi. His poems and articles have appeared in North East Review, Nether, TFQM, Coldnoon: Travel Poetics, Raedleaf Poetry, The Reading Hour, The Hindu, and Economic and Political Weekly among others.
নীল পাগলের পুজো (Neel Pagoler Pujo) / Worshipping the Blue Mad Man
They who grew up in filthy puddles
of water hyacinth and black snakes
hang together under the blue চৈত্র skies,
with a hook in their tongue, through a rope tied in a pole,
oscillating between two bamboo frames
just like a Russian gymnast
bleeding in perfect rhyme
with খোল, করতাল and মন্দিরা
হর গৌরী প্রাণনাথ
মাথার উপরে জগন্নাথ
এই বার উদ্ধার কর শিব!
Kali tries to hide his chest hair with black paint,
tugs in his artificial breasts inside his blouse
and gets ready for the show.
While Shib stands doped with her dreadlocks smoking charas.
She tries her moustache in the mirror.
Charaks stich their bodies with hooks,
they dance together, free
in a wild love trance
O lover of গৌরী , প্রাণনাথ.
You who carry জগন্নাথ
on your head,
please save us now.
এই বার উদ্ধার করো শিব!
The poem is about Charak Puja, a folk festival celebrated in parts of Assam, West Bengal and Bangladesh. It is also known as Neel Puja. The believers celebrate it on the last day of month Chaitra, the last month in Bengali Calendar.