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Early in the day it was whispered that we should sail in a boat,

only thou and I, and never a soul in the world would know of this

our pilgrimage to no country and to no end.

In that shoreless ocean, at thy silently listening smile my songs

would swell in melodies, free as waves, free from all bondage of


Is the time not come yet?  Are there works still to do?  Lo, the

evening has come down upon the shore and in the fading light the

seabirds come flying to their nests.

Who knows when the chains will be off, and the boat, like the

last glimmer of sunset, vanish into the night?

The day was when I did not keep myself in readiness for thee; and

entering my heart unbidden even as one of the common crowd,

unknown to me, my king, thou didst press the signet of eternity

upon many a fleeting moment of my life.

And today when by chance I light upon them and see thy signature,

I find they have lain scattered in the dust mixed with the memory

of joys and sorrows of my trivial days forgotten.

Thou didst not turn in contempt from my childish play among dust,

and the steps that I heard in my playroom are the same that are

echoing from star to star.

This is my delight, thus to wait and watch at the wayside where

shadow chases light and the rain comes in the wake of the summer.

Messengers, with tidings from unknown skies, greet me and speed

along the road.  My heart is glad within, and the breath of the

passing breeze is sweet.

From dawn till dusk I sit here before my door, and I know that of

a sudden the happy moment will arrive when I shall see.

In the meanwhile I smile and I sing all alone.  In the meanwhile

the air is filling with the perfume of promise.

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From: GITANJALI – ‘Song Offerings’



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