Shamusr Rahman & An Ode to Freedom
by Syed M. Islam
Published on February 13, 2007
I am deeply saddened by the death of Poet Shamsur Rahman. In honor of his contributions to Bangla, below I'm reproducing my English translation of his famous poem, "shadhinota, tumi", done in 2004.
Syed M. Islam
=================An Ode to FreedomBengali original by Shamsur RahmanFreedom, you'reTagore's timeless poetry and everlasting lyrics.Freedom, you'reKazi Nazrul, the regally maned magnificent man,rapturous in creation, oh joy.Freedom, you'rethe radiant gathering at Shahid Minar on Language Day.Freedom, you'rethe flag-draped, slogan-serenaded boisterous procession.Freedom, you'rethe farmer amidst his fields, beaming face.Freedom, you'rethe village lass's lightsome swim in mid-day pond.Freedom, you'rethe sinewy muscles on a skilled workman's sun-bronzed arms.Freedom, you'rethe glint in the eyes of a freedom fighter scouting the darkened and deserted borders.Freedom, you'rethe crisply-worded, scorching speech of a sprited scholar beneath the shade of a banyan tree.Freedom, you'rethe tumult of chats in tea-shops, public gathering and the park.Freedom, you'rethe roaring swoop of kal-boishakhi on the fiery horizon athwart.Freedom, you'rethe Meghna's heart, swelling shores in the month of Sraban.Freedom, you'rethe velvety touch, father's chivalrous prayer-mat.Freedom, you'rethe ripples on mother's unadorned sari stretched in the yard.Freedom, you'rethe hue of henna on sister's gentle hand.Freedom, you'rea vivid placard shimmering stars gripped by a friend.Freedom, you'rethe wife's raven tresses, tempestuous in the untamed wind.Freedom, you're:The colorful kurta on a young boy.The playful sunlight on a girl's supple cheeks.Freedom, you're:The home amidst a flower garden; the warble of koel-bird.The twittering leaves of antediluvian banyan trees.My notebook of poetry, to pen poems as I please.
Translated by Syed M. Islam. Copyrighted, 2004.