The Vultures

Rating: 2.7

O you the cursed vultures! since you pounced upon
These dying people, then accept their dead bodies
As their last offer−
Gifts of countless corpses
Scattered throughout the countryside, hamlets and towns...

You have left nothing for man,
So you stand before these dead bodies
And complete your image of bestiality.
You have snatched away meagre morsels of hungry mouths,
You have sucked people's blood
And created a desert of death,
And wiped out life's tidal river.
O blind vultures! now you see in these corpses
What brutal blows you gave everywhere
From your ignoble ivory towers.

Your hands did not tremble,
No imprint in your mind
For scattering famine
In the live graves of this dying earth's
Countryside, hamlets and towns.

O the tyrant vultures! here you take,
Here you take today
The last gift of those people
Whose blood you sucked,
Whose morsels you tainted with blood−
The last gift through the end of man,
Eat it up completely;
And also take the offering of
Hungry dried up young corpses−
Evidence of your cruel loathsome bestiality.

[Translated by Abdur Rashid Khan]

Note: the poem was written in 1943, on Bengal Famine.