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Posts Tagged ‘cosmos’

North Sea Lyrik: SPRINGTIME IN SYLT (Satis Shroff)

 

Sylt at Dawn (Satis Shroff)

 

You hear the waves

As they splash onto the shore.

You haven’t opened your eyey,

But you discern the cries of sea gulls,

As you slowly let the sunlight

Into your eyes.

 

Ah, the reassuring rays caress your face,

As you proceed to the balcony,

Stretch yourself

And let out cha-cha-cha,

Pa-pa-pa sounds between your teeth,

That you’ve learned

While singing in your choir.

 

A seagull with a fish in its beak

Flutters by.

All white and airborne,

Twinkling on a blue sky.

Out in the horizon,

A turquoise blue trawler chugs by.

 

 

 

Habitat for Wild (Satis Shroff)

 

The flora and fauna

have a hard time

In winter.

 

The white mantle

Of snow covers

The branches, buds and barks.

 

The owl loves winter

As it takes in all

Beings that move,

With its keen sight.

 

The woodpecker knows

Where the larvae and insects

Are hiding.

 

It’s Spring,

The landscape gardeners

Have chopped all the trees.

Now the spur is bare,

No more can I see

The deer that came

To greet me,

To chill in the peace

Of the undergrowth,

And partake

Of the wild elderberries.

 

Man needs new dwellings again,

Alas, the habitat shrinks some more.

When the deer eat vegetables

In Frau Sumser’s garden,

She cries,

‘Inform the official hunter.

They have to be shot.’

 

The deer are unwelcome guests

In her precious garden.

Now and then

A russet fox,

With a bushy tail,

Comes stealthily by.

 

Hope the hunter doesn’t get a hint.

His duty is to keep wild away,

From human domiclies.

If he doesn’t shoot,

He’s a bad hunter.

If he does,

He’s a bad guy.

 

And so the habitat dwindles,

For the wild.

 

* * *

 

 

 

Lost Friendships (Satis Shroff)

 

When old friends

Go asunder,

What remains

Are memories,

Of moments

In tranquillity.

 

When world tremble

And words shiver,

When lips vibrate

And nothing comes out

Of your larynx.

 

Just the uneasy

Breath from your nostrils.

The silence and solitude

That prevails,

When friendships

Have lost their meanings.

 

Encounters,

Wiedersehen,

Become embarassing.

And words become superfluous.

The old wounds bleed again,

Causing pain,

That come like sea waves,

Incessantly,

Stab and go.

 

* * *

 

 

Time and Tide (Satis Shroff)

 

It’s early in the morning,

On a cold wintry day.

The horizon,

A crimson and orange haze.

 

The sea looks blue, far away,

But a muddy brown near you.

A solitary figure in a black overcoat,

Throat wrapped with a long muffler,

Stands like a black storch,

Staring at the sand below his feet.

 

Is he watching

The crustaceans,

Creeping on the shore?

Or is he thinking about a friendship?

Suddenly the frothy white waves

Drench his feet.

Too late.

Time and tide

Don’t wait for your thoughts.

He walks on,

With furtive glances

Thrown at the sea.

 

* * *

 

Sea Shells on the Shore (Satis Shroff)

 

How beautiful life is,

With you

And me.

Like little children,

Gathering lovely sedimentary stones,

Washed and chiselled by time,

And by the waves

In the North Sea.

 

Cockels and mussels in their unique

Facets and colours,

Caught between dark sea weeds,

Trapped between the man-made Buhnes,

Far from the dunes.

 

Alas, the fascinating life forms

That lived inside the carbonate

Mussels and shells,

Have long lost their homes;

Either eaten by the gulls

Or other winged fishers.

 

What remains are the crushed

Cockels and shells

Of salt water mollusc,

When human boots tread on them.

And children and grown ups

Collect them.

Conversation pieces,

In afternoons with coffe, cakes and scones.

‘Look what I found on the shore!’

 

* * *

 

Spring on the Sea (Satis Shroff)

 

The birds twitter,

The sun shines.

The crocuses are everywhere,

Upon well-laid lawns.

 

You can smell Spring,

When it gets warm.

The wet air climbs up

And with it the scents

Of grass and spring flowers,

Dancing gaily in the North Sea wind.

 

You bend down often,

While walking along the beach,

To admire a strand snail or a dead sea horse,

Heart mussels, American sword mussels,

Oysters or sea urchins,

Shells with chunks and fissures.

 

The silver seagulls flying low,

With long wings spread,

Argus eyes foraging for food.

Geese searching for mollusc morsels

In the sandy dunes.

 

Now and then you see

The black oyster fishers,

White tailed bearing wing stripes,

Dive in the green-bluish water,

Swooping down like kamikazi planes,

With breathless precision.

Out they come from the sea

With fidgety fishes

Between their sharp, orange beaks.

 

They’re experienced

At cracking stubborn mulluscs,

Till the adductors give way.

The gulls known as Lachmöwe,

Search for edibles in garbage depots,

And even behind ploughing tractors.

 

* * *

 

The Canvas of Nature (Satis Shroff)

 

The colours on the canvas of Nature melt:

Blue skies,

Yellow fields,

The grey of the wintry waves,

When the sunlight is hidden,

Behind a veil of fog.

 

You’re overwhelmed

By your feelings,

Moments of euphoria,

Streams of consciousness

In the melancholic North Sea environs.

 

Intimate, gleeful moments,

When you see a big orange crab,

Stranded on the beach.

Entangled in dark sea weed,

Or Seetang as we call it in German.

 

The next big waves arrive,

With short intervals,

Sweep over the stones and sea shells on the beach.

The crab has disappeared,

Claimed by the sea.

What a delight.

 

A seagull lies on the shore,

Amid the flotsam and jetsam,

Blown by the last storm,

In List to the north of Sylt.

 

Another seagull circles the prey

From the sky,

Comes down and perches near the dead gull,

Picks and pulls its entrails.

 

To think that life began,

In the primordeal ocean.

The relationship between humans

And the sea,

When man began to venture,

Towards the unknown.

 

Fired by the desire

To search for the unknown,

Limits of the peaks and seas,

With bigger and bigger boats and ships,

The ear of colonialism began.

 

But such voyages had to be backed

With money and things it can buy,

By rulers who smelt and wanted more

Riches and spices from the Indies,

West or East.

 

* * *

 

Tale of Destruction (Satis Shroff)

 

Tell the tale you clouds and gulls,

Despite the happiness and hope,

Spread by the sunlight

In early Spring.

 

Tell your tale of destruction

Carried by the gales and storms,

That bore names.

 

The wooden stairs and platforms

Lie now strewn upon the shore,

Blown to smitherens.

Plastic products everywhere,

Among a people that care.

A water desert,

That has been left behind,

As a warning,

Till the next big gale.

 

* * *

 

The Golden Sun (Satis Shroff)

 

Through the cloudy veil

Appears the golden sun,

Changing the silvery North Sea

To a golden and crimson horizon.

The waves adorned with rich teints

Of yellow, orange blue and brown hues.

 

A fascinating play of colours,

Unfolding before your eyes.

Even the man-made Buhnen glow.

As you trudge on the beach sand,

To avoid wetting your shows,

By the ever coming frothy waves,

As they peter out near you.

 

You’re thankful for everything

That you’ve been given or attained

In lifespan.

Like a moment of revelation,

An epipiphany,

Or when you’ve had a near-death experience.

 

Thankful for who and what you are,

Towards your parents, teachers and mentors,

Who’ve moved you towards your goal.

In this spectacular theatre called life.

Ah, when Heaven and Earth unite,

The air, land and water.

 

Chandrama the moon appears

Like a sickle in the vast blue sky,

Bidding farewell to Surya,

The Sun God,

Who has metamorphosed into Agni,

The fiery Goddess that swallows all,

With her purifying flames.

This is the revelation of an epiphany,

A spectacle bathed in scarlet,

Orange, yellow, greenish-blue light.

 

Ah, how must it have been,

When the world was created?

 

* * *

 

The North Sea (Satis Shroff)

 

The sea fascinates the artist in you,

It’s dramatic setting,

With its ceaseless waves.

 

Strong winds are pushing

Curly clouds in the vast sky,

The heavy waves roll,

In the bluish-grey seascape,

Emitting a long line of spray,

Above the white froth.

 

* * *

 

A Hymn to the Splendour (Satis Shroff)

 

The sea is calm and a fair moon

Stealthily appears in the sky,

Behind the northern clouds.

 

The red cliff of Kampen glimmers

Under the light of the dying sun.

And the waves take on yellow, orange, scarlet hues.

The tides still roar decently,

Cease, recede, only to come again.

 

A sweet Frisian nocturnal air,

Mingles with the smell of salt and fish,

Gets whipped up by the wind.

 

The golden light hangs,

Like a hymn to the splendour

Of this world.

 

* * *

 

The Ebb and Flow of Refugees (Satis Shroff)

 

The waves shimmer like silvery fishes,

The sand is bleached by the moonlight,

As you walk holding hands,

Barefeet along the shore.

 

The waves have left pebbles,

Sea shells, sea weed and crustaceans,

Flotsam and jetsam,

On the sea shore.

 

And the ebb and flow of refugees,

In the distance of the Mediterranean Sea,

Who’ve struggled in their countries,

But were obliged to flee

From their human foes.

 

Taken to the open sea,

Which remains full of dangers,

Whimsical and unpredictable.

The longing for European shores,

Where milk and honey flow.

 

A forlorn hope that ends,

For many in the bottom of the sea.

 

* * *

 

Invisible Threshold (Satis Shroff)

 

Did I boast of fleeting things,

Of illusions in these earthly confines?

How vain we are,

When we don’t realise,

That our very existence

Is an earthly maya.

 

Intangible shadows we grasp with our hands,

When we know we have to leave

For our eternal home.

When we cross the invisible threshold,

We don’t need visas and passports,

Green and blue cards.

As we wander through the twilight

Sans bodies,

To be one with the cosmos.

 

* * *

 

A Magical Moment (Satis Shroff)

 

The North Sea grey-green in the from afar,

Gets frothy as the waves approach the shore.

The splendour of coloured clouds covering the immense sky.

It’s inspired fear to mortals,

It’s a revelation to those with hearts,

As seagulls glide over the horizon,

To land near the red cliff of Sylt.

A magical moment of forlornness,

Amid the beauty and vastness,

Of the sky and the waves.

 

As the glowing ball call the sun sinks,

It radiates sparkling hues,

Across the sky and waves.

The royal blue of the sky,

Is reflected upon the sea.

In the higher reaches,

It mellows to a brilliant yellow and orange,

As the fiery sun becomes scarlet.

 

* * *

 

 

 

.

 

 

 

 

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Through Nepalese Eyes’ is about the journey of a young Nepalese woman to Germany to meet her brother, who lives with his German wife and daughter in an allemanic town named Freiburg. It is a travelogue written by a sensitive, modern British public-school educated man. He describes the two worlds: Asia and Europe and the people he meets. There is a touch of sadness when his sister returns to her home in the foothills of the Himalayas.
(205 Seiten) Paperback:  €12.00 Download:  €6.25
          
It cries to be written because there are seldom books written by Nepalese writers about themselves. It’s always the casual foreign traveller, trekker or climber who writes about the people in the developing and least-developed countries of the so-called Third World.

The likely readers are the increasing male and female tourists, trekkers, climbers from the whole world who make their way to the Himalayas, each seeking something indefinable, perhaps peace, tranquillity, spiritual experience or a much-needed monologue with oneself in the heights of the Himalayas. The book is aimed at all Nepalophile and South Asian readers irrespective of their origin, and seeks to contribute towards understanding the Nepalese psyche, the world that the Nepalese live in, and the fact that it has to catch up with the rest of the world in terms of modernisation and innovations from the western world, amid the thoughts and beliefs, cultures and religions of the Himalayan world.

The book is divided according to the iterinary of the protagonist’s travels, her sojourn in Freiburg (Germany) and her excursions to Switzerland (Basle and Grindelwald) and France (Alsace and Paris-Versailles) and ends with the chapter ‘Return to the Himalayas’. It deals with the ‘Begegnungen’ or encounters with friendly Germans, the circle of her brother’s friends and the intercultural and inter-religious questions that she is confronted with during these conversations and the encouraging intercultural work being performed by Germans and foreigners specifically in Freiburg and Germany in general in creating a multicultural society, where a foreigner doesn’t have to fear deportation, persecution and xenophobia.

As my friend Satish Shroff requested me to write some introductory words to this book, I decided to start a very unusual way, by congratulating the author for the theme chosen: life, people, mentalities in East and West, with all inherent similarities (alas! few enough) and differences (quite a number). How right the late Rudyard Kipling was when expressing the essence of this subject: “East is East and West is West: Never the twins shall meet”! But by describing the two worlds as twins, he also hints at existing and possibly developing similarities.

Today’s world and way of life shortens the physical and mental distances, tending towards globalisation. Let us hope that one day, the only remaining differences will be of the geographic, artistic and cultural kind. Because there are elements which are common to both worlds and, therefore, they bring them together. Human nature, with all its emotions, love, sympathy, sorrow, hatred and a multitude of other feelings, is the same and the common element of both Eastern and Western people. The writer successfully brings out these points, clearly delineating each character.

This work is a window wherefrom one can peep to the East from the West  and vice-versa. One can make out the geographical distributions, the cultural distinctions and the historic development of East and West separately. But if someone ponders on it, he finds the same basic human sentiments and values that hold mankind together since times immemorial.

Personally, I think that this and other works of this kind will prove instrumental in creating a good understanding between the two worlds, by describing the respective natures, cultures, traditions, art, social life and thus contributing towards a better knowledge and appreciation of each other, which will hopefully result into creating a new, more human world for the whole mankind sharing the same earth and sky. This world should be like a great family, and we, its members, should be constantly striving for maintaining its unity.

So, my friend Satish, as you see, I consider you one of the architects of this new world, this ideal, this Shangri-La of the whole mankind. In spite of many private and global setbacks, I am sure we are approaching it, with little steps, it is true, but we are coming nearer with every smile, with each gesture of tolerance and understanding between the two still different worlds.

I congratulate you, my dear friend, on your efforts to close the gap. May everyone read your book with open eyes, mind and heart.
Bonn, the 26th of May 2007
(Dr. Novel K. Rai)
Former Nepalese Ambassador to Germany

What others have said about the author:
„Die Schilderungen von Satis Shroff in ‘Through Nepalese Eyes’ sind faszinierend und geben uns die Möglichkeit, unsere Welt mit neuen Augen zu sehen.“ (Alice Grünfelder von Unionsverlag / Limmat Verlag, Zürich).

Since 1974 I have been living on and off in Nepal, writing articles and publishing books about Nepal– this beautiful Himalayan country. Even before I knew Satis Shroff personally (later) I was deeply impressed by his articles, which helped me very much to deepen my knowledge about Nepal.Satis Shroff is one of the very few Nepalese writers being able to compare ecology, development and modernisation in the ‘Third’ and ‘First’ World. He is doing this with great enthusiasm, competence and intelligence, showing his great concern for the development of his own country.  (Ludmilla Tüting, journalist and publisher, Berlin).

Due to his very pleasant personality and in-depth experience in both South Asian, as well as Western workstyles and living, Satis Shroff brings with him a cultural sensitivity that is refined. His writings have always reflected the positive attributes of optimism, tolerance, and a need to explain and to describe without looking down on either his subject or his reader.  (Kanak Mani Dixit, Himal Southasia, Kathmandu)

Satis Shroff  writes with intelligence, wit and grace. (Bruce Dobler, Associate Professor in Creative Writing MFA, University of Iowa).       

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