Jibanananda Das

(17 February 1899 – 22 October 1954 / Barisal / Bangladesh)

The Great Twilight

Poem by Jibanananda Das

The wheel-cart idly rolls laden with golden straw
—the late-noon sunshine fades
The birds: black, blue and brown—flap their wings
in the cellar of the corn field
White path dust flies turn into slumber and mingle with the sky
As the setting sun leans upon the edge of pigeon-peas field.

Now in solitude his blood longs for the taste of sleep
The pregnant field looks so good—
fire dims and glows in its eye.
One day the smell of comely charcoal will bring relief to fire.

Whereat waste charter pact commission plan;
Why is the uproar of envy jealousy slander exhaustion
terror and blood-shed?
My heart is as answerless to time as it had shut up
Having asked the slender nun the questions
when Buddha deceased.

Translated by Faizul Latif Chowdhury

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, January 1, 2009