Shyam Rimal

Rice is infested
stale and smelly

potatoes rotten
piles of lentils creepy-crawly

and sacks of
salt out-of-date

without a glint
of iodine

This defines true
face of our nation,

where the essence
of all NGOs, INGOs

and Government agencies,
all mingle into one rotten core

wherein one after
the other

pandemic relief funds
are mounted up

to fuel festivities
in the entire house

and  elsewhere
enduring calamity

the cold hearths
continue to shiver

without a trace
of livid flames

warming fragile walls
of our hungry huts.

(Translated from Nepali by Yuyutsu RD Sharma, the poem is taken from Rimal’s new anthology  ‘Chamero: Pandemic Poems’)