The rain has spread her braids of clouds
Shading the whole sky
There is no sun even at noon today
The green woodlands look greener now.
A time like this brings to the mind
Radha’s journey in broad daylight
As if insane
Who knows how long ago it was
In that far far away Brindavan.
The wind was as wild as it is today
And the lightning was as restless
As the glances in a maiden’s eyes.
With her love away, with a heavy heart,
Like today’s clouds
She must have made
Only muffled sounds
At the cloudy sky
She must have stared long
Painting her yearnings
On layers of clouds.
Singing malhar songs
Wives of men journeying in distant lands
Would keep looking on at the empty roads
Their heartstrings would resonate
With the sounds of falling rains.
When it was as dark as today
The Yaksha maids
In dishevelled hair and unkempt dress
With lyres in their hands
Would lie on the floors.
Our hearts still ache
At the thought of that kadamba shade,
The Yamuna’s banks
And the dancing peacocks
They cast a shadow of gloom
On our lonely rainy nights.
Brindavan is still there in our minds
The sad songs of the beloved’s absence
Still rings all around
In the full-moon of autumn
And on rainy days.
Still that flute plays on the Yamuna’s banks
And the same game of love is eternally played
While Radha still cries in our pining hearts.
Translation of the poem 'Ekal O Sekal '
from the collection Manasi
by Rabindranath Tagore. The original poem in Bengali script may be viewed at