Tribute on Rabindranath Tagore’s 159th birth anniversary
(Translated by Mohammad Shafiqul Islam)
What sort of darkness prevails in Bengal
that the paths of progress are sealed!
For a reign of silence, even birds don’t perch on trees.
Rivers are depressed, the land sapped of life
Gives birth only to fungi but no verdure anywhere.
I fail to understand why Rabindranath had the strange
desire to be born in Bangladesh again as a tree.
No trees, no rivers here—it’s a flowerless time now.
No rebirth occurs, everyone stands against birth
Listen, Rabindranath, if we sow all your poems
and pour water day and night
not a single poem, we firmly believe, will sprout—
such arid is your Bangladesh, Thakur!
Unfaithful wind, words without tenor,
perching on peepul trees, in extreme fear,
a bird or two only talk of music today,
on the rainless and silent 25th of Baishakh.