Freedom Fighter | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 30, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, March 30, 2019

Poetry

Freedom Fighter

Freedom Fighter

Translated by Md. Elias Uddin

 

I am a freedom fighter, beleaguered by death,

that lies in wait for me every moment, flexing its dreadful claws,

sometimes like a collaborator in disguise, or a Khan-shena in camouflage,

sometimes like one in religious robes purchased from the west,

or like one that, positioned in the protected chamber of Dhaka radio,

gives fatal bites like a rabid dog, barking in frenzied desperation.

 

Ever-undaunted, I am heading forward, ignoring all obstacles,

leaving behind heaps of decapitated skulls of humans,

vandalizing schools and bridges, steamers, ships and lorries.

I position myself against the Khan-soldiers, whatever way they step forward.

Blinded by self-interest, those mercenaries are but slaves, most abominable,

and hence have come to sacrifice to falsehood all treasures of the homeland.

 

Committed, we march forward to safeguard the dignity of mothers and sisters.

From the sacred blood of hundreds of martyrs stems our blazing bravery.

In the night’s abysmal darkness, in the shadow of yonder dense forests,

blazes from distant villages, plundered and incinerated, light up all around:

in that light we move ahead. With deadly swords in our hands,

we keep on perpetrating unrelenting slaughter of Khan’s soldiers.

 

So long as a single Khan-shena remains in this land of gold,

even for a single moment won’t stop our adventurous journey forward.

When the fields, with copious crops, will assume a colourful look anew,

and the bounteous yields will overwhelm the whole country,

all fears will fade, and each homestead will overflow with exultation.

Freed of usurpers, this holy land of ours will be shining in dazzling grandeur.

 

Md. Elias Uddin is a Lecturer in the Department of  English at Dhaka University.

 

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