Thursday, June 3, 2010

Thursdays With Tagore - June 3


Every Thursday, I shall read one of Tagore's poems as translated in this book or some other poem I can find. I shall post some lines from the poem and perhaps a detail of how I liked this poem or not. Any others who want to join in this meme are absolutely welcome to do so! 

Play

Well, maybe it's play, but one which we must join
with everyone, in a happy hullabaloo!
What would be the point of leaving it all and sitting
silently in a dark corner of the self?
Know that you are but a child in this vast world,
in the cradle of infinite time, in the sky's playground:
you think you know it all, but you know nothing!
Pick it up - with faith, humility, love -
that grand toy - coloured, musical, scented -
which your mother's given you. Well, maybe it's dust!
So what? Isn't it dust beyond compare?
Prematurely senile, don't mope, sitting alone:
you won't be an adult till you join the merry-go-round.

The poem is typical of Tagore, beautifully exploring the themes that he loves: Time and life being a play with men and women 'actors and actresses' :

Know that you are but a child in this vast world,
in the cradle of infinite time, in the sky's playground:
you think you know it all, but you know nothing!

This poem I found remarkable because on the face of it, it seems very simple, but its inner meaning is profound and unforgettable. The literal and metaphorical meanings are equally gripping. These are things we've all heard people say, but not quite in the deceptively easy yet powerful way that Tagore does:

Prematurely senile, don't mope, sitting alone:
you won't be an adult till you join the merry-go-round.

4 comments:

BookQuoter said...

Thanks for visiting me, as I am so glad I found you too and discovered your blog. Thanks for the poems, I enjoy this.

Vaishnavi said...

Again beautiful! I loved this line: "Well, maybe it's dust!
So what? Isn't it dust beyond compare?" I am becoming a bigger fan everyday :)

Kals said...

BookQuoter - Thank you! I hope you enjoy then posts here :)

Vaishnavi - Aww..I know! He rarely disappoints. I'll be posting a different, new set of poems from next week onwards for Thursdays With Tagore ^_^

Priya Parmar said...

i love the melody of this poem. it is a dipping, falling and then soaring rhythm. i love the rounded vowels and the leaded consonants. beautiful.

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