This China is an Alien Land
l know of a far country
Knew their open minds;
The wide desert and the high hills
Were pictured deep and on the rock
Of our memory, and on their
Many a gray sheet.
Our lines on the rock remain,
But their sheets became food for worms,
The great China I know of
But this China is a stranger to me.
Once a bright kindly light; of my land
Gilded their yellow faces.
From their sky came like a white swan
A flakeof cloud
And shone on our written lines.
They were the keepers of our lost riches
Closing fast oblivion’s door,
The gold of our heart
Brightened their head
Tha China is akin to me.
One time they gave the son of Man
A hundred blessings to his forward march
They never let off the deadly point fo powder
But blew sparkling jets for nagging toilers
That China I know of,
It too knows me quite
I longed, we will move ahead
Under the hallowed rays of the New sun
Rising on the Eastern Sky
At the nightfall of Man’s March
That dream found its grave
In this China, on alien land.
At a time when the whole world
This is the land of opium and cocaine
This is the haunt of robbers and beggars –
Then I alone raise my fettered limbs
This China is sublime,
Here glimmers beneath penury
The beacon for Man,
The sure words of Buddha, the missionary light
Made this land its home
The wise Man of this land pointed;
Ye, ruler, your way to glory lies
Through brown bread and coarse cloth.
I now how Europe hurled
Opium and Cocaine
Deep into China’s sould.
This land, drunk with its past
Begging the benediction of Histroy
At each Go,
Is very near me.
This same China darkened with deceit
The pure pages of History.
Ah! China now is an alien land.
History tore open my chains
With the key of my soul’s might;
Then I came first nodding
That country with hammer and sickle
Set on making a new life
After the rebirth.
The rest us said :
This tribe is lost and bedraggled
War-cries rend its sky,
It is blind to honour save its own.
Whereon I held:
The Great China never will forsake
The biddings of his past,
My old friend I know, heartily.
I strive even now
For a seat of esteem and weight
To the wayward youth
Whom the whole world spurns ;
I held forward my warm hand
For his way into the council of world;
Now I rue the deep bite
Of a set of ingrate canine
On the same sure hand.
I wonder when this set sprung.
Where such perfidy took its root.
I know this China is an alien land
Thought yet it know not me
For you my friend
It is forever spring.
In my souls inmost recess,
Flowers grow at will
And set on making garlands for you,
The Lotus yet communes to the Chrysanthemum
But look, the Lion stand at the door
Facing the sneaking dragon.
Mercy for my friend flowers now even now
On the torn valley of my greif
I lust not for blood ;
But I raise my thunder
Forged by the bones
Of countless Dadhiches dead
On the ingrate foe
My lightening rages to preserve
I hound only him who pounces
The whole world is my kin,
Those in China are my brothers :
I am firm nevertheless
To the Messiah who talkis in riddles,
Deserts his men,
And the wily message,
That seeked to move the beast.
Let ice on the border thaw
It shall be writ with blood
My country is free and whole
Thruth only my badge
And powder also dry.
This China then shall find
In their Land of Moon
Volcanic burst, never yet still.
Nabakanta Barua (29 December 1926 – 14 July 2002) was a prominent Assamese novelist and poet. He was also known as Ekhud Kokaideu. As Sima Dutta he wrote many poems in his early life. He also won the following awards
- 1974: Assam Prakashan Parisod Award, Mur aru Prithibir
- 1975: Sahitya Akademi Award to Assamese Writers, Kokadeutar Har
- 1976: Padma Bhushan, Literature & Education
- 1993: Assam Valley Literary Award
- 1998: Kamal Kumari National Award