May I Lay My Life for You

Hari Bhakta Katuwal

I have just arrived, mother!
Seeking your warm lap;
bestow me with love
I am hungry for it.

Dipping my hands in the holy water of the Bagmati1
I have sworn never to leave you again
with fistful soil of my holy motherland
I am going to atone for my crimes
until these days, I wandered aimlessly without an heir
just enduring the repugnance and rebuke of others
but mother!
Wherever I was – I was your son only.
My eyes reflected your gentle face
your blood flowed through my heart and liver
the story of your glory was widespread
in my enthusiasm and zeal!

Finally, mother!
I got to call you ‘mother’
Standing amidst millions of bright offspring of yours
I have raised both hands towards the sky
desire is running in these arms:
may I do something for you!
Your pride is our existence mother!
May I lay my life for you!

Translated from Nepali by Sibu Dhakal