Monika Kumar

:

On Seeing a Watermelon

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Translated by Sampurna Chattarji
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Seeing a watermelon was my introduction to vastness.

I can only approximate
how much I love you:

by the handful,
as much as the sea
or not at all.

Approximations fail me
when I look at a watermelon.
How red it will be
how fleshy
how its meditative eyes would be arrayed inside.

You were stubborn in your insistence:
the earth is round as an orange.
You refused to accept
it could also be like a watermelon.

Anyway!
I lied to you
when I said I can tell you, approximately,
how much I love you.

All estimations are a failure of my language.
I need a few signs of exclamation
mad transports
that will gently translate my failures.