Ariya Cam – Bini by English

Nguyên tác tiếng Chăm, Ariya Cam – Bini và bản tiếng Việt của Inrasara, trong Văn học Chăm I – Khái luận – văn tuyển, NXB Văn hóa Dân tộc, H., 1994, tr. 322-338.
Translated by William B. Noseworthy
Sinh viên thạc sĩ – Lịch sử Đông Nam Á
UW-Madison Wisconsin


*
This is an epic poem that I will now reveal before you
That I will bring out for all to hear

Why, I ask, must love be like this, oh my love (do you hear?)
For love, I have composed myself and built up (falsely, I fear)

I have so much love and affection that it stifles my breath
and I have no regrets for my bodily wealth and worldly gains

My only fear is that you pay but lip service to your word
That you will ignore me, leaving me to my loneliness, suffering within my chest

But I will never abandon you, (not until our last breath)
My only fear is rejection, by your parents, (I regret)

Oh my love, I have saved such a large part of my heart for you
even though I have saved a smaller part for my parents (I admit its true)

So my love, let us reveal the plot
Our lot (our destiny), is so full of hardship that nothing compares

And your parents cannot understand, (our requests are met with stares)
We must bear the shame of others and let them laugh at our expense)

The neighbors will laugh at us and we ought to just ignore them
And I will step with you into paradise

10.
Although the cremation site is painted with the image of the sacred bird the Hơng
it is also on the flag-poles, which are already prepared around the site (but smooth your brow)

Because once we die, we will be able to escape the image of the sacred bird the Hơng
back to heaven to find each other once more (in the crowd)

If the funeral lasts three days or even ten, (it will not matter, as all)
our possessions will be offered to Allah

Compassion and love is so great a force that none can be compared
If we ask for blessings from God then we will be together again (we will be spared)

For it is we who are truly faithful to one another
And if we can meet again in one place I will be grateful to you

Even though I haven’t said much I hope I will understand fully
And it will be possible to remain sincere

hen I speak up my mother (strains, but) listens
When my father hears he tells me to come and he asks me “Why?”

Yet I hear everyone talk
They say that you love this Bani boy

That if you beat me I will bear it
That you could break your stick or whip and I’m still going to bear the pain

(Yet) I’m drifting asleep with my closed eyes
And yet I awaken still in bed crying tears of sadness

20.
And so its true! I cannot deny my sorrows
And I have tried to work in order to forget the sickness

I clean the mat in my house upon which I am supposed to sleep
As my loneliness returns and I am biting my fingers to relieve the pain

So I am squatting thinking about the sadness (with the rain)
Reliving the past with such a heavy heart that I can’t speak

I miss you so much that I don’t know what to do
So I cut a palm tree ̣Hrak and draw upon it, to send it to you (F)

So I wait until my mother is asleep (or resting for a minute)
and then tiptoe out of the gate to come visit you

You sleep so soundly
And my tears flow, slowly sinking

I look into the room to gaze upon your sleep(ing body)
And I come to you and rest my head on your lap

And you, your hand upon my neck, as the tears flow (back)
Right off of you on to my face

(So,) I suffer from hunger and thirst but haven’t eaten
But I am not tired and I am not weak

I just think so much
As the wife of this man is sick

30.
There was one time when he was sick, (when he was the same)
Skinny as the smallest finger, the pinky on your hand

And she would bring rice to him each meal and more
returning very quickly more times than she could count

And so the tears began to flow, And she could only squat and cry
She blamed heaven with her self pity, asking “Why? Why can’t I be simple like everyone else?”

I put bananas out for a prayer offering
One plate of coconut cakes and popcorn

All of these offerings to all the gods
There is a ritual practice dance, outside in the front yard offering a goat

But this is just an offering, not to pay a debt
There is one goat for GOD

In order to give health
She asks GOD to give a short life,

When she heard that her husband is a healthy man again
She finished her work and then came for a visit

Her mother latched the door
She was so poor to come home alone

Remembering the words- reminded of before
So she comes home by herself at night

40.
To ask for permission, to say goodby
And a tiger stands in the middle of the street

She screams and the tiger runs away
With her hand she grabs her shirt to wipe her tears

Sitting on the floor and starting to cry
The tiger comes next to her but she doesn’t know

And the mother opens the gate (she guessed)
She didn’t enter at first, but after a time with shame

Stepping in sheepishly but not to her room yet
Her mom coughs, she is afraid of awakening her

And she holds the door, and she opens it
But the parents are awake already, and call and ask

Where have you been?
She whispers “To pee…”

At night she is queasy
And she blames heaven for not letting them reunite

She blames their neighbors for separating them
And the separation between her and her mother

She blames herself
For not eating and not sleeping

50.
The door is latched
“Oh my love, sorrow, I will receive death as a punishment

Return my husband” (She cries)
“We agreed to die to be in the same tomb

I agree (still)
But I will never say goodbye- I will not part

Her mother tries to cope with her bad treatment
The mother beat him with the rod

Five sticks were broken
The mom beats him at the whipping poll

After that they called the neighbors over
Relatives feel pity and ask the mom for generosity

(And) Someone looses face
Because one time I was not honest

So I had my hair cut
Then I was tied to the pole

They grabbed the stick and I beaten non stop
They grabbed the string/rope and tied my neck

Continuing for hours upon hours
I was calling out to my parents for my apologies, “I’m so sorry…”

60.
y mother sharpened the knife and went to eat rice
and my father held the knife in order to kill me

But someone came over
and grabbed the handle to set it aside

So I have lost my honor (my soul is marked)
And my parents have separated me from you

They call everyone (to the scene)
and strip off my clothes

So, if I die I agree to do this
If you waste away I will never say goodbye

If you die I will carry you
My heart will never leave you, just call heaven for me

My my five livers1 and my hard head
I will forget about the pain and keep a tough face

And so, I think it over
I chew and swallow my tears, crying, and calling out to god

Then my mother takes up the rod again
If you love me still, please come to the house to stop her

If she continues, try to suffer it just one more time
I will jump the fence and release you as soon as I am able

70.
If I can open then gate and untie you, I will give you clothes to wear
Push you aside and lie on the floor in your place

If you do this, then it is certain that you will die
Because she will surely attack you too

The five rods will be broken
So they take the handle of the axe back to the flesh

They raise the axe handle without a conscious mind
With blows to the kidneys you surely are almost dead

And you will lay there almost broken by the pain
As the grab the rod and beat your head

But your mother and father begin to cry
They touch you head and they are startled by the blood

And there is one who goes with you to call out for your uncle
So, you ask him if just maybe, just maybe he knows where your love has gone

“I saw the girl bare in the streets” he replies
“I saw her take a new road

And her tears rained on the dust as she ran
So she now lays under a tree, beaten, with her shredded clothes

She had her skirt still, but looked naked
It was worn as a shard, as if it were nothing”

80.
And now I must share this sorrow with you
With no covering, having had your mother tear them off

If the mosquitos come to pierce your skin I will beat them off
Oh my love please open your eyes so we can talk about our fate

We must share, we must converse about it like this
Our situation is shared, it has been suffered for many years

One side is Cham, and the other is Bani
But we are not usually wandering separately as boats on the water

So as we talk I have an idea
Why don’t we go and fetch a potato in order to relieve the hunger

And I try not too (without thought), but still I think too much
The tears are pouring down upon the plants

I have never been so low as this
I have to dig through the dirt just to eat

But I don’t blame anyone but myself
For this miserable fate of living alone in the forest

This is like nothing that I have ever had to endure before
So, dear neighbors, why is it that I have been treated like this?

The more I think the worse it gets
For one thousand years I will not forget

90.
All of the people standing together in the same line
My mother shows her anger at first but will forgive me in time

The village surrounds me to test me
and they arrested me in my mother’s house

So then I cried my love
For as my love, we both agreed for death

So the villagers will bring it upon us
As they in turn beat us to death

We are treated with salt and chili
And they say, treated as we deserve

Mother beats on day and night
Father beats and then asks how he can serve

Mother carries the canes and rods in a bundle
And father hits and attacks, as she in turn hurls insults and (then) disowns

For treated with chili and salt is fate all sinners ought to own
With soul and body as lờ loét (An open wound- for all to see)

Touch and feel a bit more pain, crying to heaven for all to see
Upon rising again there is just more pain

So they take the shirt and whip as tears again begin to flow
The sensation of burning is deserved

100.
As neighbors no longer care
The burning continues (it hasn’t healed)

When a heart no longer loves it is difficult to live
But father opens up when he sees the face of his own kin

But they beat off all the skin, bearing bone, as it shone
in the house, where I want to sleep so badly

If you want it, skinny, during the last moment
There is a print of the stick, a scare from the stone

I feel so poor and sorry for him so my body is sick
I am so hungry and my stomach wants food

So I serve a rice bowl, but don’t care to make it full
We used to eat good rice with tuna (but that was a long time ago)

An in this moment we have just tarot and salt
Traveling far away with a helping hand on the shoulder

She wishes that perhaps they will still become husband and wife
if heaven in time gives them the chance to reunite

And she can not be alone, as the neighbors are still walking without love
So I die for you, alone, as you may be already without life

It is because my hearts still yearns for you that I have composed this long song
And my root is the Hơng, the sacred bird

110.
I make a burnt funeral, with drums and gong
and her root burnt so the corpse to heaven gone

Use the drums and gongs, a funeral house made of silk
the funeral pyre is large, (something monstrous we have built)

The house of silk, has a red net that I hung up
The bed for the dead (the coffin) is from the wood of mango and the toad

So they bring it home to paint it (bright as we can see)
The Hala Car (the palm bearer) has cut four trees

And they carry them to see the holy nandi cow
Burnt, mother don’t worry, (don’t shed a tear for me)

The sacred bird Hơng with the holy nandi cow leads the way to heaven
And the funeral pyre is great

And the Paxeh ties the portrait ’round the water buffalo’s neck
He carries the coffin, but it is heavy, so others help to ease his back

So the Hala Car lights the fire, and I, I begin to cry
I throw the poem to the crowd, and then jump on top the pyre

So the light consumes us both, (and we know about the rest)
And oh my love, (it is now clear), I put my faith to the test

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