Poetry of the Taliban — "How long?"

Poetry of the Taliban

The works in Poetry of the Taliban give voice to the Afghans’ view of their country in the wake of the U.S. occupation and the U.S.-backed Karzai government. In this 2007 poem M.A. expresses frustration with Afghanistan’s current state and the growing disparity between the haves and the have-nots. (For more: browse the book in Google Preview, links to reviews and features, read quatrains by Nasrat, and win a FREE copy of the book):

How long?

How long will people wander in disappointment?
How long will they wander thirsty, hungry, and insecure in
    the deserts?
Most people are jobless wandering around.
How long? You wander hungrily in deserts.
The wrecked economy deprives you of education.
How long? You pass the time waiting patiently.
Pretending to carry out reconstruction; they established
   personal businesses,
They enjoy life, and you? How long will you wander in the
   rubbish heap?
They voice hollow slogans of equality;
The salaries of a hundred men are given to one; how long will
    the poor wander?
They observe well what is going on with oppressed people;
How long will you wander unauthorised?
Every day, our nation suffers from the fire of the enemy,
How long will the shameless puppets walk without being taken
   to account?
M.A. is astounded by such a life;
How long will they stay drunk and happy?

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