Beggarly Heart

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 come with the ceremony of a king.

When desire blinds the mind with delusion and dust, O thou holy one,
thou wakeful, come with thy light and thy thunder

– Rabindranath Tagore

Submitted by:

Ashwin, who says “I can’t agree more with him. He has just nailed it – just the things I need to soothe me in those circumstances.”


I’ve mixed feelings about Tagore, but I’ve come to the view that I need to revisit his writing. Enough time has passed since school inflicted Tagore on me. Enough said about that, now onto the man himself. He wasn’t a poet or writer alone, although what he wrote in both capacities would be enough for any one person or lifetime; he was also a songwriter and composer, an artist, and an educator.
You can read a comprehensive biography on Wikipedia, here, a condensed version on the Nobel Prize website, here, and a chronology of major events in his life here.
A number of celebrations took place in May on the occasion of his 150th birth anniversary. As part of this, a number of news organizations unearthed old images of him and his associates – here are photo galleries from the BBC and The Hindu.
You can read his works on this site, most of it in Bengali, some in English. You can also find a number of works available on Project Gutenburg, here.
We’ve run poems by Tagore on this site previously – Krishnakali, and The Borderland.

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