Friday, March 24, 1995

Bangladesh '95: 176 years behind the world

I really had planned on wishing you well....
but hang on Dear Bangladesh,
what is it that I wish you today ?
I thought something like 'Happy Birthday to you',
would immensely please you... I will get a holiday anyway,
while you....a load of bullshit, by newspapers printed from
various shades of traitors, distorters, apologist, fundamentalist, atheist.
... but me, I am only agnostic, and allegedly a trifle eccentric !

The Television will feature 'special bulletins' and reporting,
of happenings, like 'wreathes being laid' on monuments and memorials,
where otherwise: dogs urinate the rest of the year,
of Prisoners being fed 'improved diets', of mercy and clemencies,
of 'solemn vows of reaffirmation' of the 'Spirit of Independence',
and ofcourse the ritualistic interview with a straight faced LIAR,
who keeps panting in ANTICIPATION,
for that epic point in his narration,
where he hopes to be applauded for his 'baptism in fire',
of how he 'took on' the enemy,
and how he won the BATTLE.

Battles only battles, Dear Bangladesh is what we have won,
the war was lost forever, for the 'traitors', they too survived,
in our midst...and today, we've got them everywhere...

To cite a few examples:

Our politicians have a bizarre reputation
and a strange preoccupation,
for keeping dubious connections
with all our 'known and sworn enemies' ?
Our Opposition is in collusion with a poet friend of mine
languishing in prison, for abuse of power, theft and corruption!

Additionally they collaboratively collaborate...
with the 'collaborators' of 1971...while begging votes from us
orphaned offspring's...all in 'memory'
of the assassinated Father of the Nation ?

Added together is the excitement of enforced imprisonment
for the voters for forty eight hours or more...
stay at home and PARTY, switch on your favorite ZEE TV,
that blares 'sexy, sexy, sexy'... while YOU and ME,
stuck at home, with probably an expectant mother...
tormenting in labor,
or somebody with a serious cardiac problem....
Mind you, no 'exempt Ambulance' there for your rescue....
least of all :the least important of your citizens,
denied of his daily survival this we call DEMOCRACY
and want more, more and more ?

Our lady in POSITION....(isn't she pretty ?),
I know most of you will disagree,
but me thinks most empathetically,
that she is a lot smarter than you or me.

From obscurity to national recognition, her sycophants calls
this 'national salvation'...she has come a long way baby....
big deal that she does not have an University degree !

She's known to work hard, but there is also... the memory
of her 'beloved assassinated' husband's glorious mischance
in HISTORY.. yes,yes, yes the 'announcement' or 'pronouncement'..
of what's that word ?
..INDEPENDENCE.... that's right, that's your story !!

Dear Bangladesh,
you are pretty successful in today's world of 'market economy',
and thanks a millions we have thousands of sweatshops we proudly
call 'Garments Industries'.

Some boring 'intellectuals' are pretty worked up about some
'image problem'... me thinks it is an image of being
RICH as opposed to being POOR,
of pedal pushing Rickshaws, overtaking PAJERO's,
of push carts blocking and slowing down 'killer trucks',
of males in Saville Row suits lecturing sanitation to naked peasants,
of females in haute couture hairdo's preaching feminism,
of Police standing by and scratching their testicles,
of 'leaders' saying one thing, but meaning quite another.

We have progressed from two hundred years
from the rest of the world,
to one hundred and seventy six years...B E H I N D ?

In twenty-four years from POOR to CHEAP,
we happily built our wealth so steep,
on donations, alms and charity
...tossed at us routinely, but regularly...

Dear Bangladesh,
I do not despair, only wonder, albeit a bit too loud,
if being born to this POOR and CHEAP part of world,
this motherland of mine, has well being worth the while...
in my O N L Y lifetime?

Your glorious Birthday today,
yet my shoulders are heavy and my head hung low,
with my burden of guilt and shame.

I love prophecies and facts,
and I know we will never do away
with the dreaded Special Powers Act,
for there has got to be something 'essentially special'...
to deny You, me and HISTORY...
our moments of glory.

It's time to sleep now, to switch off the TV,
but hang on Dear Bangladesh,
even your 'national anthem'
is a plagiarized version of an original Baul song ?

Time to sign off, to hit the sack..sweet dreams !

March 1995