(Translated from the Bangla by Afsan Chowdhury)
Everyone thinks I am not normal because I have no interest in sports:
Football, ping pong, cricket,
Even rugby leaves me cold
But I love playing another game of 64 moves
Where there is only one opponent.
There is no danger or injury in this game
No need for large playgrounds as in soccer or golf;
It thrives in the dark
Besides, there is no referee as it has no rules
If a player tackles the opponent well, there is no injury
But endless pleasure ...
A game where both sides win,
Where there is no defeat but only victory for both.
The only trophy is “satisfaction”
Shared by both sides, this game of equality is what I believe in.
Before this poem ends, let me tell my readers:
True players never play in the dust.
The game that I speak of is so difficult
To explain to fans,
Because the game is spoilt if the teams
are not evenly matched.
So this game needs so much more skills
More than all that the other games need.
I like the most difficult game in the world:
To be equal is the pleasure of this game
To want to be together,
And no enmity drives this match.
Razu Alauddin is a poet, essayist and translator. He has translated into Bengali quite a few books by Jorge Luis Borges.
Afsan Chowdhury is a multi-media journalist, historian and litterateur.