Five Sonnets of the Five Poets

Translation: Gazi Abdulla-hel Baqui


Shadow of Body

Abdul Quader


Body tells shadow why it always

Remains entwined with the body following it.

O the fleeting! Hiding in the darkness of night,

Why do you increase your bold move in the day light?

Suppressing the pain of sadness in the depth of mind

I exhibit the smile of happiness as shame to you!

I remain alone silently, I want to move away.

Why do you become my partner to burn me?


The goblet of sin is my secret closet

You peep into there, so much excess of you!

Stealthily I dive deep into those evil acts of sins

You becoming witness create all chaos and trouble

What should I do? Thinking of it pricks my conscience

Shadow never leaves me, it always follows from behind.


I could not know Myself

Bishnu Dey


Even till today, I could not know myself

As much as I look into within myself, I cast my look in the mirror,

Being sun-burnt and wetted by the moonlight,

The house of regret, gratified by Ashar

I am not at all out of thought,

Always I think that, who is this One? So, that dear face turns gray,


So that beloved face is bedecked with grey,

On that face the vermilion of heart paints the graceful beauty,

In the eyes at noon, the crimson evening of nerves

Becomes the pyre of eternity,

On whose lips are all the sorrows and joys of darkness,

Whose gait holds all the theories of aesthetics?


Lined with the colour of being, that face in its own colour and design

Always flees into the azure void, in the ceremony of choosing husband.



The Accidental Death

Hasan Hafizur Rahman


In the anxious panic of the prisoner, the daydream of lightning,

Breaking open the dark sky flies away in the forests

The gathering clouds rise up amidst the loud roaring,

Raising the agitated arms violently rush forward to fully swallow.

The sky is taken aback for its direction where the earth shudders in fear,

The children leave homes and houses and the country is ever flooded,

The claws of electricity lie in wait where movements are quick,

The broken nests are on the uprooted trees; tears galore for emptiness.


Prices for Baisakhi electricity are high for the whole nation in the country,

In the sky and on the ground and in the utmost toil’s growing ample crops,

What signals time and again by hurling profuse harm

From first to last, all labour goes in vain and thus starts but end is of no match.


In the lightning’s teeth and in the deep dark hole

I only see hundreds of aspirations lying dead.




(To Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah)

Mohammad Moniruzzaman


The flame of your knowledge burns unquenchable.

The entire heart was enlightened by the touch of its affection.

I have heard from your mouth: motherland, mother tongue and mother

Are dearer than life and the path of truth is the best forever.

Today I notice that promise shining in billions of eyes.

Your lamp keeps burning a nectarous stream of light,

From soul to soul. On whose canvas the beauty of the eternal truth

Flashes: In the soul’s mirror its bold unfolding occurs.


I don’t understand, how to save that flame of lamp

You offered to my inefficient hand, burning in the storm,

On the troublesome hard days. I just keep it with care,

Yet trembling, I understand that it keeps me alert unawares,

But I see you always calm; so today

I offer just in your hand the honeyed blossoms of your meditation.



Before the Destruction of the City

Rafiq Azad


When the city will be in ruins and the last clock is broken,

To nurture envy against the happiness of the naked and the dead is easy.

We all cry out ‘ships, ships; –

Yet no ship will ever float on this rotten water.


The sea is far away, not near the city:

All around there is the shallow murky and dirty water.

Our love to each other is mixed with blood and pus

Now I will find no more trace of health and aspirations.


Wherever you are stationed with valuable furniture and house:

You will never feel peace and tranquility in this life.

Soundless, the useful chariot of life will move forward—

Because none will blow the siren before destruction.


Like a deeply rooted tree, my talent is sound and intact

So I lulled a desire to see the Giraffe’s neck during my life time.


(The translator is a poet, researcher, writer and educator.)



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