U & I | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 11, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:39 AM, January 11, 2020

U & I


My sinews are soon to be wired

My memory will be kept in a cloud;

My tooth will be blue -

Still I’ll be one click away from you.



On the other side of the mirror

I reside

On this side of the mirror

I reside

On both sides of the mirror—





Let’s say that the machine

Is a man

That works

To convert

One energy

To another;

To convert

I in two —




You know what -

I hate you!



I know that

The feeling is mutual.



What’s wrong with you?

You the one

Who can make me perfect

Is far from ...




Let us go then

You and I -

Yeah, sure

Why not ?

After all

You and I

Are us —

That resides

On both sides

Of the mirror



Our hands shake

Time is on our side;

A machine

That needs key;

A machine

That needs winding;

A machine

That needs alignment

With time

That is

— in the cloud.



When clouds merge

They drop pitter-patter

They sound like-

You and I

who are out there -

Maybe on a tin roof

Or in a song

That is




Are you sure

We are on both sides of a mirror?

And not of a glass?

Because I can see us, you know!

Shaking hands,

Giving time,

— like in a movie machine

— all too mechanical

Where a ‘I’

Likes a ‘You’


(December 28, 2019)


Shamsad Mortuza is Professor of English, University of Dhaka. Currently on leave, he is the Pro-Vice-Chancellor of ULAB.

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