Manorama Mohanty wrote many poems about Lord Jagannath, India, nature, and many other aspects of life. Some of them have been compiled into collections, featured at the bottom of this page. One of her Indian patriotic poems, "Ever-Honored Motherland of India," won her First Place at the age of 85 in an Odia-language poetry competition hosted by a biannual magazine in Puri, Odisha, India called Haribola Hooluhooli. The poem, its translation to English by Prof. Sarangadhar Baral, and a photograph of her receiving the award are immediately below.

Ever-Honored Motherland of India

by Manorama Mohanty

Translated by Sarangadhar Baral, PhD

Professor of English and Dean of the School of Education and Humanities

Mizoram University, Aizawl, India.

Dr. Baral is a poet, writer, and researcher, who has published numerous books and research articles on Indian literature and culture.

O Mother India, my dear motherland!

Decorated with riches and glories you are resplendent.

Nothing there is in the universe to match or compare;

Where in the earth is a summit like the Himalayan one

At whose range stands out the Gauri-Sankar acme.

Where the Ganga and the Yamuna flow,

Our holy streams perennial;

Whose trade-ships roam around the globe bearing pearls.

Mother dear, your womb has issued Vyasa,

Chanakya and Kalidas;

Forever worshipped as the mother of great heroes,

O my Land of Bharatavarsa.

They have done knowledge studies innumerable

And done sciences matchless to wonder;

They are gone now, the world instead sings

Of their thought and wisdom hard to ponder.

In the world-court, because of your eminent seers,

Buddha and Mahavira, Guru Nanak and Adisankar,

India today has held high her head sure.

Heroic selves like Shivaji the indomitable are born

Who blackened the face of death

And brightened the fame all yours.

Queen Lakshmi of Jhansi by all norms of heroism

And Mira by all sheer bhakti have settled

The evidence of women power.

O look, Khudiram an adolescent so brave a breed,

For the sake of his land all yourself selfsame

He accepted with a smile death by hanging.

Sculpture rare in this country of ours

Where else to ever see?

Art of Ajanta and Ellora, of Khajuraho and

Of the south coast Madurai.

Twelve-year-old Dharama held the Mother tall in glory,1

His child self willingly turned to self-sacrifice;

See Konark stand as the witness very.

The sea bathes your feet,

The canopy above the sky holds;

The wind does the fan, and the sun spreads light.

Poet Bankim sang to your name

Which smells of plenty in streaming fluids and fruitfulness.

Your four directions are widely known

To be the holiest places in four corners of renown.

In the east is present Lord Jagannath our Supreme One,

Whose flag waves to redeem and save

The sinners hard and selves all fallen and forsaken.2

Rameshwar in the south is greatly famous,

In the western City of Dwarka rules Dwarikadhish,

Ever-revered is Badrinath in the northern hills.

And here stands the sentinel invincible to guard 3

Your splayed home yards, O Mother!

All sing only your great lore.

I am but foolish, too small a self

To tell of your things so extended and high.

Thus, my head bows to your feet a thousand ways.

Hindus, Muslims, Christians, and Buddhists,

Alike Sikhs and Parsis, different their customs,

Faiths and practices all variant in form.

But all do live as beloved people

Belonging to the selfsame India, the one home.

They all breathe like brethren in affectionate ties;

It is for this hence the Land of India is dearly

Honored and dotingly envied.

(Maatitota, 5th Street, Puri City)

Footnotes (by translator, Prof. Baral)

1. Dharama: The legend goes thus: a twelve year old child by name Dharama asked her mother about his absent father. His mother sent him to visit Konark where the father was the master mason. In days, Dharama came to learn a sad fact that all masons are failing constantly in fixing the pinnacle top of the temple. He volunteered to do that in spite of his father’s objection.

Because, the king had ordered to execute all of them, if the temple was not completed with its top by the following morning. Only in the cover of dark night, Dharama fixed the temple top successfully. But he had to jump into the mouth of the sea below in order that heads of twelve hundred masons were saved. Nobody revealed to the king of Dharama’s self-sacrifice and sheer achievement.

2. The temple flag is known as the Patitapavan (patit + pavan) itself the sure sign of liberation for all sinners and fallen souls.

3. The sentinel invincible signifies the Himalayan range of hills to thwart the enemies from the east and north.

"Ever-Honored Motherland of India" wins first prize in Haribola Hooluhooli magazine poetry contest

Published in 2013, "Ever-Honored Motherland of India" won first prize in a poetry competition run by the magazine Haribola Hooluhooli (ହରିବୋଲ ହୁଳହୁଳି) in Puri, Odisha, India. The poem describes the heroes of the various lands of India to which Manorama traveled or lived in throughout her life. An translation is forthcoming.

Manorama Mohanty receiving the first prize award from Haribola Hooluhooli (ହରିବୋଲ ହୁଳହୁଳି) at the age of 85.

From my writings... (Vol. 1)

କିଛି ମୋ ଲେଖାରୁ ... (ସଂଖ୍ୟା ୧)

Published collection of poems, first of two volumes.

From my writings... (Vol. 2)

କିଛି ମୋ ଲେଖାରୁ ... (ସଂଖ୍ୟା ୧)

Published collection of poems, second of two volumes.

A Garland of Poems

ଭିନ୍ନ କବିତା ମାଳା

Published collection of poems.