For Some Years Now - Poem by Taslima Nasrin
For some years now, I have been standing quite close to death, almost face to face,
Standing dumb before my mother, my father, some dear people,
For some years now.
For some years now I do not know exactly whether I'm dead or alive,
For some years now the distinction between living and death
Has gone on reducing till it's a thread now
Waving in emptiness.
For some years now the being that inhabits me within and without
Has been a horrible, dumb creature,
The last leaf long gone from its tree,
Spring gone forever from its life.
If I die tonight, don't speak a word,
Only bury an epitaph under a shiuli tree somewhere,
An epitaph I've written over some years now,
An epitaph neatly written in white on a white sheet.
[This poem was written while Taslima was forced to live in confinement in an undisclosed location in Delhi from 22 November 2007 to 19 March 2008. Samik Bandapadahya translated this poem from her book PRISONERS POEMS]
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