Avijit’s killers

Anisur Rahman, poet, critic and playwright, was guest writer in Uppsala from 2009 to 2011. This newly written poem was composed in response to the murder of the very well-known author and blogger Avijit Roy, who was hacked to death by Islamist terrorists in February.

December 17 2015 Text: Anisur Rahman Translation from English: Neil Betteridge

Nothing to do in this town, truly I am a dreamer,
with my betel leaves and cigar in my pocket, I follow one path after another,
walk down one lane after another, pass along the canal at the crossing –
three ways, four ways that meet, police patrols, sodium light and hairless dog,
crow, birds, I greet them all.
Next to the city park and come close to the university campus
I asked the leaves a question, one by one, where they lay on the ground:
“Tell me, when the multitudes in their thousands met in broad daylight,
who then killed my golden genius of a brother?
How was he killed?”
My words are snapped up and answered with a whisper
of the dust of the street and all the leaves of the trees and birds
“Listen carefully, what we say is confidential and may not even by mistake
be disclosed; it is a secret and delicate thing.”
With so many voices in my eats I cannot rid myself of it.
From leaves and dust I hear:
“You too are Avijit’s brother, how could you be so craven?
In this city, in the multitude of the thousands, the murderers kill your brother
without being caught, how can you live with yourself,
even you are Avijit’s murderer, think on it.”