Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Goodbye Party For Miss Pushpa T.S.- Hilarious

our dear sister
is departing for foreign
in two three days,
we are meeting today
to wish her bon voyage.
You are all knowing, friends,
what sweetness is in Miss Pushpa.
I don’t mean only external sweetness
but internal sweetness.
Miss Pushpa is smiling and smiling
even for no reason
but simply because she is feeling.
Miss Pushpa is coming
from very high family.
Her father was renowned advocate
in Bulsar or Surat,
I am not remembering now which place.
Surat? Ah, yes,
once only I stayed in Surat
with family members
of my uncle’s very old friend,
his wife was cooking nicely…
that was long time ago.
Coming back to Miss Pushpa
she is most popular lady
with men also and ladies also.
Whenever I asked her to do anything,
she was saying, ‘Just now only
I will do it.’ That is showing
good spirit. I am always
appreciating the good spirit.
Pushpa Miss is never saying no.
Whatever I or anybody is asking
she is always saying yes,
and today she is going
to improve her prospect
and we are wishing her bon voyage.
Now I ask other speakers to speak
and afterwards Miss Pushpa
will do summing up.
( A poem by Nissim Ezekial)
When I first came across this poem, all I could do was laugh, laugh and laugh. Nissim Ezekiel in this poem very aptly reproduces the manner in which Indians speak wrong English. This is mainly because of the reason that we first think in our mother tongue and then translate the words and phrases to English while speaking. The result would then be something like this, " Miss Pushpa is smiling and smiling". If you keep your ears open then you will come across such English almost anywhere and everywhere in the country. 
As you go through the poem you will find some phrases that are typically Indian. For eg: "departing to foreign", "two three days", "cooking nicely" , "not remembering now" and the likes. 
Another notable feature is the fact that Miss Pushpa is always addressed as " Miss Pushpa" and as a "dear sister" but never by her name . So very Indian. Interestingly Miss Pushpa is described to be both internally and externally sweet, coming from a very "high family". And the icing on the cake is that her father is a "renowned advocate". A perfect example of how family background and the profession of the father matters in India. Not to forget the initials in her name " Miss Pushpa T.S.". Another Indian phenomenon. And what is hilarious is that all this is being mentioned at her farewell party. 
Well, firstly I'm amazed at Nissim Ezekial for creating poetry out of such an ordinary situation - a farewell party. And yes, he does successfully manage to not only capture your attention but also to tickle your funny bone. However, when it comes to a post colonial context, it also could have been that he was stressing on the validity of the use of this native variety of English, though far separated from the standard.


  1. This is so funny. Jessy, you need to read Srini's post on Cybernag.in--it is a lot like yours. Do go and read it:)

  2. Ezekiel is pleasure to read.

  3. hilarious..dere r other words 'basically', 'actually', 'in fact' that are added for no purpose at all..and d funniest i find is wen ppl introduce themselves as 'myself so-and-so' :D :D

  4. I remember learning this school, a long time ago.
    It keeps coming back to mind when I hear Mc Donald's "I'm lovin' it."
    They picked it up from us and now it's 'accepted' :D

  5. Thanks for the post. Loved it. Nissim Ezekiel is a brilliant poet. Always a pleasure to read his poems of ordinary situations and people:)

  6. Brilliant. Never read him before. Thanks.

  7. Thanx a million Jessy. Was searching for this Ezekiel special. Brilliant


  8. i feel shy at the time of reading this poem and lastly i feel great about the poet n.e.
    by milan sharma

  9. I love this poem. It’s so hilarious. Nissim Ezekiel is a really great poet and he is a great observer so he makes it feel so real, at the same time keeping it humorous. This one I recited in one event venues Chicago venues had for poetry day one time. It was hilarious with the accent.


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