(स्वीडिश कवियत्री मारिया वाइन की कविता जिसे कृष्णा KSC ने अनूदित और संपादित किया है)

एक तानाशाह
ताले के सुराख से बड़ा नहीं होता
लेकिन उसकी अगल-बगल का अंधेरा होता है

तानाशाह अपनी हर धमकी के बाद
हल्का होने हाथ धोने जाता है जब
खाली हवा में :
वे दस हत्यारे – उंगलियां उसकी
हँसने लगते हैं चुपचाप।

तानाशाह बस जाता है
सुरंग में या प्रतिध्वनियों की मीनार पर
सांपों बिच्छुओं और उल्काओं के पड़ोस में
क्योंकि वह कांपता है संध्या की सिन्दूरी रौशनी में।

उसके राज्य में
इकाइयों और सूर्यास्तों के प्रशस्ति गीत
अबाध्य घोषित कर दिए जाते हैं।

तानाशाहों के दिल नहीं होते
सुन्दर औरतों को रिझाने के लिए
लेकिन वे नज़र आती हैं उसकी डिनर टेबलों पर
उसका सानिंध्य पाने को।

एक तानाशाह के सामने
कोई तड़पती इकाई सिर उठाती भी है तो
ठूंस दिया जाता है उसे खूनी दीवारों में
जो उसे धीरे-धीरे निगल जाती है।

एक भीड़ को कत्ल होते देखकर
वह अट्टहास कर उठता है
लेकिन जब वह देखता है एक
अकेले आदमी को
इकहरी मौत मरते हुए
तो कांप उठता है उसका कलेजा
अपनी ही हवा में दिन दहाड़े।

फिर आता है दूसरा और तीसरा
फिर चौथा और अंत में वो
जिसे देख वह हो जाता है मरणासन्न
डिनर टेबल भी हो जाती है सुनसान
इस तरह अब उसे पता चल जाता है
कि अब उसकी दसों उंगलियां घूम गयी हैं
उल्टी खुद उसी की तरफ खूनी नाखूनों के साथ।

# Maria Wine


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