Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Chain of Pearls

Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941) was a Bengali poet, philosopher, artist, playwright, composer and novelist. Rabindranath Tagore was Asia’s first Nobel Prize winner. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1913 for his book Gitanjali. "because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which, with consummate skill, he has made his poetic thought, expressed in his own English words.

Gitanjali or the 'Song offerings' in English translation is a volume of 103 poems selected by Tagore from his several Bengali books of Poetry. It is the poetry of God as an experience and God for Tagore. Sometimes the poet addresses the God as the Mother-Mother, I shall weave a chain of pearls for thy neck with my tears of sorrow.‘Gitanjali’-83 I love this poem. It reads..

Mother, I shall weave a chain of pearls for thy neck
with my tears of sorrow.
The stars have wrought their anklets of light to deck thy feet,
but mine will hang upon thy breast.
Wealth and fame come from thee
and it is for thee to give or to withhold them.
But this my sorrow is absolutely mine own,
and when I bring it to thee as my offering
thou rewardest me with thy grace.
Rabindranath Tagore

A demonstration of eternal gratitude for all the readers to follow. The narrator tells his mother that he shall weave a chain of pearls for her neck with his tears of sorrow. Most probably it is because from his birth he has seen how his mother slaved for him and mad innumerable sacrifices on his behalf. The stars have wrought; made or fashioned in the specified way; their anklets; an ornament worn round an ankle; a sock that reaches just above the ankle; of light to deck her feet, but his will hang upon her breast. The stars above are the heavenly witnesses and have instructed him the manner in which the chain should be made. This would be like a reminding souvenir of his love for her. She is like a goddess to him who raised, molded and shaped him up till the present day.

The greatest wealth in life is the unbroken bond of love between a mother and her son. The material one comes later. Wealth and fame come from her and it is for her to give or to withhold them. At the right time when he is ready to take the burden of his own life upon his shoulders, she would bless him with wisdom, strength, confidence and moral support. His only desire is to see her happy and always smiling. But this sorrow is absolutely his own for he has learnt how to bear his own sadness and misfortunes and when he bring it to her as his offering she rewards him with her grace; elegance of movement: courteous good. Only her sweet words and her tender love can mend his broken heart. The chain of pearls is the crowning glory that he will put around his mother’s neck.
 Review of this Poem source:Andy Kester Sawian

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