Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thursdays With Tagore - November 25


The poem I'm sharing this week is probably my all-time favourite Tagore poem and definitely one of his most popular poems. It has a lot of personal importance too because this is the first and  only poem that has brought tears to my eyes so far.

I'm sharing it this week for two reasons. First, this is one of those poems that I believe everyone ought to read. I don't know of anyone who's read the poem and not liked it. This poem finds its way into most speeches addressed to Indians or about India. Recent samples being President Obama's speech at Parliament and PM Dr.Singh's speech in the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit. 

Second: On the eve of the second anniversary of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, something that shocked, startled and pained many of us, I think this is an important reminder of a great man's dream for his country. A dream that might sound Utopian, but one that is worth putting our heart and soul in to attain.

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high 
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments 
By narrow domestic walls
Where words come out from the depth of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way 
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee 
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

I am not going to try analysing the way simple words are used exquisitely or the wonderful metaphors. Because this poem is all about the emotion. Read it again, again, again and experience it. This poem, like many of Tagore's poems, is not restricted to India alone and fits just as beautifully for any country. 

6 comments:

mel u said...

Thank you for sharing this very moving poem-I found it very powerful

Vaishnavi said...

This will probably the most profound lines I will ever read. You are right, I don't know anybody who has read this one and not been moved either. I suppose it is fitting that you have posted this today, I hope everyone is safe tomorrow.

ds said...

Hello. Mel sent me. I have never read any Tagore. This poem is beautiful, powerful, and as you say, most timely. Thank you so much for sharing it!

Kals said...

Mel U - Indeed it is. I'm glad you like it :)

Vaishnavi - I definitely think so too. I think one of the reasons this poem is so powerful is because, you know, it comes from Tagore's heart and deep beliefs. If that even makes sense. It's an amazing poem, one of the few I know by heart :)

ds - Thank you so much for dropping by and following :) I'm so excited every time someone discovers Tagore and lets me know how much they love his work. I hope you like the poems I post in the coming weeks too :)

priyaiyer said...

I love this poem. Just love it. There hasn't been a single time when I have read this poem and not been affected by it.

Kals said...

That is exactly the same with me! An incredible, unforgettable poem.

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