Geetanjali by Rabindranath Tagore

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If you are interested in poetry, you should immediately and urgently read 'Geetanjali' by Rabindranath Tagore. Even if you don't get engaged by the poems, you are sure to be inspired by Yeats' introduction to this collection of poems -- Geetanjali.

The poems were originally written in Bengali, and they were translated into English by Tagore himself when he traveled by ship to London (from Kolkotta) around 1908. If you are a romantic, there is no greater romanticism then what you would find in Tagore's lyrics. And this romanticism is at once both spiritual and temporal, and edifying and cleansing.

Geetanjali -- Geeta (song), anjali (offerings) -- is a composition of songs of offering to the spirit, the mind, the intellect and the body. And here is a song ---

"Obstinate are the trammels, but my heart aches when I try to break them.
Freedom is all I want, but to hope for it I feel ashamed.
I am certain that priceless wealth is in thee, and that thou art my best
friend, but I have not the heart to sweep away the tinsel that fills my room
The shroud that covers me is a shroud of dust and death; I hate it, yet
hug it in love.
My debts are large, my failures great, my shame secret and heavy; yet when
I come to ask for my good, I quake in fear lest my prayer be granted."