(Based on the Sukumar Ray satire in Bengali, Ekushe Aine)
Translated by © Monish R Chatterjee
(in commemoration of my daughter (an aspiring lawyer)'s 21st birthday, August 23, 2019)
In Lord Shiva's very own land
The laws are lethal and grand!
Should one but slip and fall
Will be grabbed by sentries on call
The village Kazi finds him guilty
Twenty one rupees his penalty.
There, if it is not quite six at eventide
Sneeze without a ticket? Beware, just run and hide.
Without a ticket if one dares sneeze, then -
Vigorous the whipping on the back with a cane
The kotwal stuffs snuff in each nostril