Rabindranath Tagore was one of the most renowned Bengali authors and poets of all time. He is best known for his lyrical poetry, which often explores spiritual and religious themes. Tagore also wrote novels, dramas, and songs, and was a prolific artist who produced thousands of paintings and sketches. In 1913, he became the first non-European to win the Nobel Prize in Literature.
Tagore’s writing is deeply influenced by his spiritual beliefs, which derive from both Hindu and Buddhist traditions. Many of his poems explore the nature of love and its connection to the divine. He also wrote extensively about social issues, protesting against poverty and inequality.
Below I have listed down some of his most beautiful poems.
1. On the nature of love
The night is black and the forest has no end;
a million people thread it in a million ways.
We have trysts to keep in the darkness, but where
or with whom – of that we are unaware.
But we have this faith – that a lifetime’s bliss
will appear any minute, with a smile upon its lips.
Scents, touches, sounds, snatches of songs
brush us, pass us, give us delightful shocks.
Then peradventure there’s a flash of lightning:
whomever I see that instant I fall in love with.
I call that person and cry: `This life is blest!
for your sake such miles have I traversed!’
All those others who came close and moved off
in the darkness – I don’t know if they exist or not.
2. Where the mind is without fear
Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic wallsWhere words come out from the depth of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.
Art thou abroad on this stormy night
on thy journey of love, my friend?
The sky groans like one in despair.
I have no sleep tonight.
Ever and again I open my door and look out on
the darkness, my friend!
I can see nothing before me.
I wonder where lies thy path!
By what dim shore of the ink-black river,
by what far edge of the frowning forest,
through what mazy depth of gloom art thou threading
thy course to come to me, my friend?
Thanks for reading!