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NASRIN, Taslima


Let all of you together find a fault with me,

at least a fault you all jointly work out,

or else, a harm shall befall you.

Let you all combine speak out why you've sent me in exile.

Say: Taslima, you're at the root of a pestilence, infant deaths

or you've committed as atrocious a crime as rape or genocide;

Say something like this, at least two or three of the stigmas to substantiate my banishment.

Until you detect a suitable blemish in me,

until you make me stand in the witness box,

to raise your accusing fingers in spiteful wrath at your black sheep,

how can you pardon yourselves?

Had you been able to say where I'm wrong,

the pangs of banishment wouldn't have engulfed me so harrowingly.

I'm eager to see you detect my wrong,

so that I can embrace you as my well-wishers.

Name my fault that made you ostracize me,

specify at least a loophole in my character.

By apportioning a blame on me,

you ensure your own acquittal.

Why should you let the history frown at you?

Why have you eclipsed the light of civilization,

by rooming with the darkness of medievalism?

Establish a cause for your action,

and if you can't,

then set me free,

not to save me,

but for your own survival.

[Translated by Sujal Bhattacharya]