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Nazmul Haque

(1st March,1978 / Sirajgang, Bangladesh)

The Shepherd's Song


(Me and my friend's house
and the 'khir nodi' in between,
I wish I could fly to there,
but God just did not give me the wings.)

This village and that village-
and the empty field in between,
Keep writing the story of 'dhan kaon'
and keep always reading.

This village is almost empty,
and some trees here and there,
And houses of the farmers beside them
keep silently standing.

That village out there
does a deep darkness encircle,
And embraces the houses and
adds to the love of the same.

This village looks to that one,
that one looks to this,
And it is as if a thousand years
would skip as they keep looking.

And the brook in between
with its burning waters keep running,
And look - it holds many a jol-kumudis
upon it breasts.

Two ways from two villages
come and meet here,
And celebrates the meeting
with smiling poddo in the water.

Some says of some distance past
a farmer of this village,
Loved a girl of that village and
embraced death smiling.

This boy walked the careless way to that village,
And that girl was coming with the sweet sound of nupur,
And it was here where they lost their way,
And it is with those 'jol-kumudi' that they are sleeping now.
Who knows but dropping from their garlands,
That these 'shapla-lota' are smiling on the water.

This village and that village -
sperated by the singing water,
But still there is an unseen bridge
tying them up together.

Some wife with her pitcher
when waves the water of that bank,
This bank receives that tide
with cordial invitation.

When peasants from this village
cast the spell with their flute,
Tears roll down from the wounded heart
of the girls of that village.

When from here the sad tune of songs
makes its way to there,
The awaitng ears spread their hearts
to hear it from there.

Submitted: Sunday, May 15, 2011
Edited: Monday, May 16, 2011

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