Page 6

Poem By Iftekhar Sayeed

He lost his head.‎
Gallows humour keeps us sane
In Bangladesh. A country where we’ve lost
Our sanity. The obituary’s buried
In a corner of page 6, barely
‎3 by 2, under “Zilla News in Brief”, ‎
Along with two road accidents, tornado....‎
A natural and regular affair, ‎
I nearly missed it for the cricket games.‎
We pick these boys, democracy’s shock-troops, ‎
When they are teenagers, full of ideas, ‎
And send them out to capture polling-booths
And ballot-boxes; they help themselves to ‎
Taxes from local businessmen; they take to drugs
To block out for short spells a life they know won’t last. ‎

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Other poems of SAYEED

A Victim Of Democracy

Based on the death of Mahima, who was violated by ruling party student activists because her father and ‎ brother belonged to the opposition. She killed herself on February 19,2002. ‎

The Lynching At Rampura Lake

And again it had been people on the street who had been forced to take [the] law into ‎ their hands and lynch to death (sic) both Alauddin and his younger brother ‎ Rakib....Alauddin had been an Awami League activist during the Awami League rule, but ‎ jumped the ship to join BNP [Bangladesh Nationalist Party] when they came to power. ‎

‎ -‎ Dhaka Courier 23 August 2002‎

The Cry

Police could not yet arrest the alleged rapists as some local ruling party leaders gave them ‎ shelter.‎

‎ - The Bangladesh Observer,7th April,2003 ‎

Requiescat In Pace

SUNAMGANJ, Apr 16: A local leader of Bangladesh Chatra league (BCL) [opposition party ‎ student wing] was gunned down by a youth in Sadar upazila on Tuesday....‎

‎ - The Bangladesh Observer, April 17,2003 ‎

How Many Savimbis?

Mr Savimbi fought to oust the new ruling party, the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Africa ‎ ‎ (MPLA) , largely because he was not in charge of it. His soldiers followed him, largely out of tribal loyalty. ‎ The United States and the apartheid regime in South Africa supplied him with cash, missiles and ‎ reinforcements, largely because the MPLA was Marxist, and received help from the Soviet Union and ‎ Cuba.‎

‎ - Obituary of Jonas Savimbi, “a despoiler of Angola”, The Economist, March 2nd 2002‎