Theme: Love

The Coward

Looking back now I think
I had once fallen in love
But before the end of the day
It came to nothing.
I didn’t know what to say
Why on her own didn’t she guess?
I had something to give
But it slipped from my tray.
I didn’t have the courage
Her mysterious smile
I couldn’t read
My heart-string was tuned
It rang only by half
But was lost in my doubt
Now how can I find it
Diving into my pain?
My love, you were so vain!
With a melancholy look
My timid heart
Why didn’t you win?
That day you cast away the jewel 
Pendant on your breast
In sleepless nights
Now like a necklace
There your teardrops shine.

Translation of the poem Bhiru from the collection Parishesh by Rabindranath Tagore. This is not much of a poem but here the poet in his old age remembers a romantic event in his life. In his adolescence, before leaving for England, Rabindranath lived with a Westernized Marathi family in Bombay. The exquisitely beautiful Marathi girl, Anna, used to teach him English manners and spoken English. She fell in love with the fledgling poet who did not have the courage to respond to her amorous advances because he was extremely shy. She had requested the poet not to keep beards. Rabindranath did not keep that request. The original poem is at  


More By  :  Kumud Biswas

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