Writing whilst in the restaurant By Sunanda Karunarathne


Seated in the restaurant
This poem I pen
While the bubbles on the foam
Burst upon the glass of mead
Liquor empties
Yet again, in it fills
While I pen this poem
Upon a paper napkin
Of me who writes this poem
I will not tell
Of my roots and kith and kin
I will not tell
Of the work I do
I will not tell
And where I live
I will not reveal
The glass of liquor empties
Yet again, it is filled
What of the shape of the glass
What of the color of the glass
Regardless, what matters after all
Is to empty the liquor without a spill
Whether this poem reaches another’s hands
Whether it reaches another’s eyes
Or bites the dust, would one care
The intoxication wears
Even the glass shatters
Friends, come hither but hurry
Raise up the drinks that you carry
We shall each ask how the other sfare
And to waste the time let us not even dare.
Let us make a toast!

 -Translated by Sandamini Ranwalage

Eng. 404 - student translations of Sinhala poetry.

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