Monday January 9 -“Drunk with the joy of singing”
What poem might speak to the courage and hope and anxiety that stirs a university campus at the dawn of Term 2 — — after the holy day intimacies, visiting, eating and drinking that waken deeper than usual places of hearts and memories? Rabindranath Tagore’s Poem # 2 in Gitanjali can remind readers that the challenges of starting a fresh season of learning are not limited to anxiety and the sticker shock of reading all the term’s syllabi at once, 15 weeks of work, for every class, yikes!
Tagore’s Poem # 2 exults in beginnings and finding one’s voice. Best to read the poem out loud, with pauses for breathing a little in the spaces around the words.
Have a blest first week.
john st sj
Today’s post: Rabindranath Tagore
When Thou commandest me to sing
it seems that my heart would break with pride
and I look to Thy face
and tears come to my eyes.
All that is harsh and dissonant in my life
melts into one sweet harmony
and my adoration spreads wings like a glad bird
on its flight across the sea.
I know Thou takest pleasure in my singing
I know that only as a singer I come before Thy presence
I touch by the edge of the far spreading wing of my song
Thy feet which I could never aspire to reach.
Drunk with the joy of singing
I forget myself
and call Thee friend
who art my lord.
Tagore Gitanjali # 2
mcnichols campus after snow, december 13, 2010