Six professors of the Department of English of Dhaka University retired recently and were given a farewell on the occasion. The following poems were penned for this occasion.
Though not really tired of D.U., I've retired!
Definitely, there are things about the university
I'll miss after 42 years—bright-eyed students,
Like-minded colleagues and buzzing corridors,
Kala Bhabhan's adda-filled Teachers Lounge
And, my classes, where I felt most students'
Minds would quite often mingle with mine.
How could such things ever make one tired?
But as I retire I think too of things there tiring—
Dirty corridors, stuffy, crowded classrooms,
Fans and phones that hardly ever worked well,
Too many processions led by self-serving “leaders”
Too many colleagues courting administrative favors,
Too many students in classes only for “marks”,
An annoying dysfunctional semester system
And endless appalling scripts were truly tiring!
But though some things did tire and I've retired
This I must say—48 years of D. U. wasn't enough!
Now that I am past a major bend of life's road;
I know the path ahead of me won't be as rewarding
Certainly, D.U. was good to me. And for now?
Though what lies ahead of me I really don't know
Surely my happy memories of D. U. will sustain me
As I move into the next phase of my life's journey!
FAREWELL! a formal word of salutation and recognition
has negative vibes attached.
A fearful finality, imposed shackles
and thoughts of impending doom!
Bid farewell to this year's Spring
and showers of Monsoon
with as much fervor as you can
for they will surely return
to delight your sight and sense of rhythm
Spare humans given single cycles of life,
full of natural ups and downs,
traumas and unbearable circumstances at times.
If one has found some peace somewhere, somehow,
let it remain with him or her.
Do not awaken miseries
with a shocking FAREWELL.
No clamour please of tolling bells
just “Shantih, Shantih, Shantih.”