Among many joys and sorrows
Incoherently crowding in my life
Sometimes a touch of time in its fullness
All on a sudden comes to me.
It is like a piece of diamond found by sheer chance
Among the pebbles on a mountain road.
Often have I thought
I would string it in the necklace of the muse
But I never felt bold, I was afraid
I'll lack suitable words
I was worried
In too much eagerness to express what is plain
I may over-reach its limits.
Once I was staying in Darjeeling -
It was below the broadway
In a bungalow least seen.
My enthusiastic friends
Had planned to spend a night on the Sinchal hill.
We couldn't count upon the king of the mountains
Its vast expanse
Was like the bare and lonely foreground
Of an ascetic's hermitage
So from our belongings
We took for our excursion necessary things.
We had a lute, a box full of food
And a young friend full of fun
Novice Nabagopal rode on a pony
We were always on the look out
To put him into some awkward spot.
Along the winding road
Echoed our loud jokes.
We were overconfident
To fill up the emptiness of the hill top
Our humorous spirit was enough.
When we finished climbing the ascending road
It was late afternoon.
With our unbridled fun
Like the froth of wine
We shall fill the night.
We reached the peak
The sky was wide
The sun was setting in the horizon
The valley below was a network of flowing streams.
The western sky was the playground
Of a heavenly child
His pot of gold had overturned
Overflowing the entire world.
My gleeful and noisy friends became quiet
We stood still.
The lute lay silently at our feet
The whole world seemed to be intent and in wait
It was not those olden times
And we didn't chant any paean
Either in whispers or aloud.
We looked back and found
Like the sudden laughter of our friend
The full moon had risen in our front
It was like a piece of poetry just composed
By the poet of the heavenly court -
Full of mystery, a riddle.
The maestro plays on his musical instrument
But one day when none was around
The strings strung in various tunes
Produced a harmony not heard ever before.
The melody that rang that day
Drowned itself in timeless silence.
And the maestro broke his instrument.
At that rare moment
When this wonderful music rose
I was alive on this earth
And I could say ' how wonderful!
Translation of poem 1 from the collection Patraput by Rabindranath Tagore. The original poem in Bengali script may be viewed at