Gitanjali: A Collection of Indian Songs
An illuminating collection of inspirational poems by a Nobel Laureate
While traveling through one of the poorest regions in India, W. B. Yeats was amazed to discover the women in the tea fields singing the songs and poems of Rabindranath Tagore. This striking scene led the great Irish poet to appreciate the depth of India's far-reaching tradition of poetry and the fame o...more
I always wanted to write a review on Geetanjali, as it has been very close to my heart and always will be, but something stopped me every time I made an attempt. Maybe it was the memory of all the overflowing emotions which I had experienced while reading these poems or it was my immense love and respect for its writer that made me feel unworthy to make any sort of comm ...more
Arguably one of the finest poets of all times, Rabindranath Tagore was an authorial voice in the pre-independence era of India. Born in 1861 and having found his calling at the tender age of eight, Tagore chiselled his artistic bent to perfection by diligently harbouring an observant and free stre ...more
"I read Rabindranath every day, to read one line of his is to forget all the troubles of the world."
-Unnamed Bengali Doctor addressing W.B. Yeats, contained in the Introduction
Isn’t it just fitting that this masterpiece be introduced by a person no less than William Butler Yeats who is another Nobel Laureate? Tagore received the Nobel in 1913 and Yeats in 1923. It is ostensibly perceivable that Yeats managed to capture the focal points in his Introduction, so quoting parts of Yeats introduction ...more
"I came out alone on my way to my tryst. But who is this that follows me in the silent dark?
I move aside to avoid his presence but I escape him not.
He makes the dust rise from the earth with his swagger; he adds his loud voice to every word that I utter.
He is my own little self, my lord, he knows no sh ...more
Where the mind is without fear and the head 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 ...more
Although now that I have finished reading it, I do not recollect each of the poems but there are a few that I shall always remember.
I loved these for instance,
Day after day, O lord of my life, shall I stand before thee face to
face. With folded hands, O lord of all worlds, shall I stand before thee
face to face.
Under thy great sky in solitude and silence, with humble heart
shall I stand before thee face to face.
In this laborious wo ...more
"O My Lord! Truly am I in (desperate) need of any good that You bestow on me!" (Quraan: 28:24)
When the heart is hard and parched up,
come upon me with a shower of mercy.
When grace is lost from life,
come with a burst of song.
When tumultuous work raises its din on all sides shutting me out from
beyond, come to me, my lord of silence, with thy peace and rest.
When my beggarly heart sits crouched, shut up in a corner,
break open the door, my king, and c ...more
I only learned from high school social studies that Rabindranath Tagore won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1913. But I never attempted to read his works which ...more
در زبان بنگالی گیتانجالی یعنی مجموعه و معنی عنوان اصلی یعنی مجموعه نذرهایی در قالب شعر
عنوان: گیتانجالی؛ نویسنده: رابیندرانات تاگور؛ مترجم: رویا خاکساری، لاهیجان، نشر الهام اندیشه، 1392، در 184 ص، موضوع: شعر بنگالی شاعران هند قرن 20 م
Face to Face
Day after day, O lord of my life,
shall I stand before thee face to face.
With folded hands, O lord of all worlds,
shall I stand before thee face to face.
Under thy great sky in solitude and silence,
with humble heart shall I stand before thee face to face.
In this laborious world of thine, tumultuous with toil
and with struggle, among hurrying crowds
You need to have a big appetite to digest each and every word of Gitanjali written by Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore (1861 - 1941). The work was originally written in Bengali published over different Bengali books on poetry from where 103 poems have been picked, compiled and consolidated in this book. The translation has been done from Bengali to English by Rabindr ...more
April 24, 2011
Finished. Wonderful, poetic, imaginative are just a few words to describe Tagore's work. I don't know of any other way to describe it, so I'll just let Tagore speak for Tagore's self,
On the seashore of endless worlds children meet. The infinite sky is motionless overhead and the restless water is boisterous. On the seashore of endless worlds children meet with shouts and dances
They build their house ...more
As an example,
The same stream of life that runs through my veins night and day runs through the world and dances in rhythmic measures.
It is the same life that shoots in joy through the dust of the earth in numberless blades of grass and breaks into tumultuous waves of leaves and flowers.
It is the same life that is rocked in the ocean-cradle of birth and of death, in ebb and in flow.
I feel my limbs are made glorious b ...more
One of my favourites is
Pluck this little flower and take it, delay not!
I fear lest it droop and drop into the dust.
I may not find a place in thy garland,
but honour it with a touch of pain from thy hand and pluck it.
I fear lest the day end before I am aware,
and the time of offering go by.
Though its colour be not ...more
There is something so pure in the very concept of bhakti – the submissive devotion to god; something so poetical, that it shall touch ...more
This and Kahlil Gibran's works became my favourites. One of my favourite from this book:
On the seashore of endless worlds children meet. The infinite sky is motionless overhea ...more
Gitanjali translates to "Song Offerings" and while the English version is a translation, it was translated by Tagore himself. Thus, there is no need to wonder whether the translator got it right or injec ...more
This English version of "Gitanjali" is a series of prose poems that reflect on the interrelationships among the poet/speaker, the deity, and the world. Although Tagore had a Hindu background, the spirituality of this book is generally expressed in universal terms; I could imagine a Christian, a Buddhist, a Muslim, or an adherent of another tradition finding much in this book that would ...more
The poems in Gitanjali has a strong spiritual bent. The first few are full of this sense of exultation, for lack of a better word. Then the tone of the poems change: there's a sense of yearning and frustration now, this is a younger Tagore still seeking spiritual ful ...more
The morning sea of silence broke into ripples of bird songs; and the flowers were all merry by the roadside; and the wealth of gold was scattered through the rift of the clouds while we busily went on our way and paid no heed.
We sang no glad songs nor played; we went not to the village for barter; we spoke not a word nor smiled; we lingered not on the way. We quickened our ...more
If you Love Rumi, you'll love "Gitanjali"
Pluck this little flower and take it, delay not! I fear lest it
droop and drop into the dust.
I may not find a place in thy garland, but honor it with a touch of
pain from thy hand and pluck it. I fear lest the day end before I am
aware, and the time of offering go by.
Though its colour be not deep and its smell be faint, use this flower
in thy service and pluck it whil ...more
Tagore modernised Bengali art by spurning rigid classical forms and resisting linguistic strictures. His novels, stories, songs, dance-dramas, and ess ...more
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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 toward perfection.
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost it's way
into the dreary desert sand of dead habit.
Where the mind is led forward by thee
into ever widening thought and action.
In to that heaven of freedom, my father,
LET MY COUNTRY AWAKE!”
The infinite sky is motionless overhead and the restless water is boisterous. On the seashore of endless worlds the children meet with shouts and dances.
They build their houses with sand, and they play with empty shells. With withered leaves they weave their boats and smilingly float them on the vast deep. Children have their play on the seashore of worlds.
They know not how to swim, they know not how to cast nets. Pearl-fishers dive for pearls, merchants sail in their ships, while children gather pebbles and scatter them again. They seek not for hidden treasures, they know not how to cast nets.
The sea surges up with laughter, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach. Death-dealing waves sing meaningless ballads to the children, even like a mother while rocking her baby’s cradle. The sea plays with children, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach.
On the seashore of endless worlds children meet. Tempest roams in the pathless sky, ships are wrecked in the trackless water, death is abroad and children play. On the seashore of endless worlds is the great meeting of children.”