My song has put off her adornments. She has no pride of dress
and decoration. Ornaments would mar our union; they would come
between thee and me; their jingling would drown thy whispers.
My poet’s vanity dies in shame before thy sight. O master poet,
I have sat down at thy feet. Only let me make my life simple and
straight, like a flute of reed for thee to fill with music.
The child who is decked with prince’s robes and who has jewelled
chains round his neck loses all pleasure in his play; his dress
hampers him at every step.
In fear that it may be frayed, or stained with dust he keeps
himself from the world, and is afraid even to move.
Mother, it is no gain, thy bondage of finery, if it keep one
shut off from the healthful dust of the earth, if it rob one of
the right of entrance to the great fair of common human life.
From: GITANJALI – ‘Song Offerings’
Tagore Short Poems
Tagore Stray Birds