"It Snowed on Tibetan New Year" by Adong Paldothar

High Peaks Pure Earth has translated a poem by Adong Paldothar titled “It Snowed on Tibetan New Year” that was written on February 22, 2012 and posted on his TibetCul blog on March 2, 2012.
February 22 this year was the first day of Tibetan New Year, Water Dragon Year, 2139. It has been noted before on High Peaks Pure Earth that there has been increasing online debate amongst Tibetan netizens about Losar, many arguing that Tibetans all over Tibet should celebrate New Year on the same day. It is interesting that this Amdo poet should deliberately write about Tibetan New Year, even though many areas of Amdo celebrate Chinese New Year – although recently there haven’t been many celebrations at all of course.  
For more poetry by Adong Paldothar see “Straying Far From Myself”, “I am Tibetan” and “Drugchu: The Dragon’s Wrath”.

“It Snowed on Tibetan New Year”
by Adong Paldothar

This year on Tibetan New Year, it snowed
The flurry of snow, suddenly brought to mind
My family, far away in my hometown
A bustling and busy scene, working hard

Today is my real new year
It is like a cup of true liquor
Seeping into my body
Speeding up my heartbeat
Warming up my quiet meditation

The way I see it, what is called a year
Is like a transparent wall
Between them
People leap over, or run their heads against the wall
For most people, it is like air
While for others, it
Becomes a glass wall

This year on the wall, it snowed
It was on my way home after work
That I encountered the flying snowflakes
Spinning and dancing
Surrounding me

Some snowflakes went into my eyes
Making me weep
For those close relatives who bumped into the glass wall
Tears mixed with snow, although the past
Was piercing cold
The snow still comforted me

I recounted many feelings that are hard to express
To the snow, or with the help of snow
I passed on my messages to the sky and earth
Therefore, for me
The snow no longer seemed that cold
Rather it was like warm seeds

This year on Tibetan New Year, it snowed
The snow fell on my heart
In those places that are overgrown with weeds
Snow has no choice
Just like me

I hope to climb across this wall
Behind the snow wall
I see a rainbow
And the smile of the lotus

This year on Tibetan New Year, it snowed
For a whole day
But it did not manage to moisten the earth
It came as if to comfort my feelings
And went back to the sky again

– February 22, 2012 in Xining

This post is also available in: English

One Comment

  1. long time ago when I was young I followed some cow herders up the mountain from Pahalgam Kashmir to La Dad and beyond. Perhaps it was the excellent smokes or the wonderful food and fresh mountain air; but it will always be the most spiritual journey of my life — full of magic; love & amazing spiritual beauty. Thanks for the reminder & happy New Year.

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