WesternizedMy heart broke today.
It was a normal day, like any other. I was at work doing another long assignment, and naturally I got bored. So, I thought: ďHey, I havenít read a Nepali poem in a long time! Letís do that.Ē I looked up Bhupi Sherchan, my favorite Nepali poet, and picked a random poem of his. To my surprise, and fear, I couldnít read it. I had to strain my mind and google translate half the words to understand it. I couldnít read my own language. My heart broke.
I was never that good at reading Nepali, but back in the day I could do so if I tried really hard. I didnít need to google translate anything or such. After the fact I just began a slow spiral of guilty thoughts such as: What have I been doing? Spending all this time reading English poems, American poems, French poems translated in English, Italian poems translated in English, and even god damn Romanian poems translated in English! I have indoctrinated myself into a foreign language while paying no heed to my own. I felt like such a traitor. All this time I never really paid any mind to how much I have been westernized. Itís finally hit me now. I have betrayed my culture.
You might think Iím being over dramatic, dear reader. But see, art doesnít exist in a vacuum, though I wish it did. And of all the arts least of all poetry. Poetry is the voice of the masses. It is the words of a collective group of people, a culture, being writ down by its spokesperson, the poet. Why do you think they killed Lorca back in the Spanish Civil war? Poetry is propaganda. As a culture dilutes so does its poetry. Look at America. Their poets are either academic dickwads whoíll masturbate each other to extinction in their ivory tower or reactionaries reacting to nothing and waging a war no one's noticed. And I have spent eight years studying the language of this culture, reading their great poets, listening to their music that now I have been so far removed from my own that I lie halfway, far removed from both sides. Never can belong in one and never to belong in the other. What do I write now? Fuck.
Poetry by Sameen
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Written on 2017-12-19 at 20:38
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