Nothing lasts, behold.
Behold how the leaves, the flowers, the old villagers,
the pose of rivers’ dancing, the brazen pitchers and
the fire of hookah
and the flock of grown up girls gradually diminish
like the monsoon of Hilsa fish !
The yellow leaves, sounding in the wind,
fall down on the droughty desolate land.
The foreign ducks too,
on whose bodies there are millions of bubbles, fly away
into the shallow blue cup of the sky.
Why doesn’t anything last long?
The corrugated iron sheet, the hay or the muddy walls
and the undecaying banyan tree of village
get uprooted by the terrible typhoon of Chittagong.
The plaster splits and in the long run the mosque of our village,
like our Faith, collapses down with a heavy crash.
The nests of sparrows, the love, the twigs and tendrils
and the covers of books fall off twisted.
By the water’s bite of the Meghna,
the crops’ green scream of the horizon starts trembling.
The houses float, float the pitchers and the cowsheds.
Like the affection of my elder sister, the old
embroidered pillow gets also sunk.
After the decay of dwelling-houses, nothing exists more.
Only the birds, fond of water, flying in the sky
wipe off the foam of wind from their beaks.
–Al Mahmud, Bangladesh