January 22, 2018

The Wild Duck in Pain


The Wild Duck in Pain

by Shahinur Islam

The wild duck in pain flaps his wings in deep water

and the wind comes to kiss his mild body nonstop

when he bobs up with soft kans grass scents on his beaks.

Yet the eyes of the hunter just aim at his breast

for which drunkenness? Deep darkness descends around,

the egrets fly away responding to their flock;

the magical dew fallen on the sands beckons

being at the distance of a life. At that time

the pain-puzzled deaf wild duck fumbles only for

the resonance of his own wings desperately.

It goes in vain— the cry of the night goes in vain

to the ears of the hunter; in the breeze of dawn

perhaps the fragrance of his life will drift no more.

And in the daylight there will not any more flash

all pain and joy of the feathers splashing water.

A memory of unknown time seems to come at last

and asks: where and when have you seen such a darkness?

All the dark nights of the earth gathered together

seem nothing to it— no darkness since earth was born.

The world’s pain seems to touch the body of last pain

in defeat and is floored at its feet pale-faced.

At the night’s first hour, the hunter pulls his trigger;

then the heat of the body of the duck just hides

wholly in the womb of the night in a moment

and all his pain falls along with his last feather.