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I asked nothing from thee; I uttered not my name to thine ear.

When thou took’st thy leave I stood silent.  I was alone by the

well where the shadow of the tree fell aslant, and the women had

gone home with their brown earthen pitchers full to the brim.

They called me and shouted, ‘Come with us, the morning is wearing

on to noon.’  But I languidly lingered awhile lost in the midst

of vague musings.

I heard not thy steps as thou camest.  Thine eyes were sad when

they fell on me; thy voice was tired as thou spokest low–‘Ah, I

am a thirsty traveller.’  I started up from my day-dreams and

poured water from my jar on thy joined palms.  The leaves rustled

overhead; the cuckoo sang from the unseen dark, and perfume of

‘babla’ flowers came from the bend of the road.

I stood speechless with shame when my name thou didst ask.

Indeed, what had I done for thee to keep me in remembrance?  But

the memory that I could give water to thee to allay thy thirst

will cling to my heart and enfold it in sweetness.  The morning

hour is late, the bird sings in weary notes, _neem_ leaves

rustle overhead and I sit and think and think.

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From: GITANJALI – ‘Song Offerings’



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