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Corona or not: Bengal celebrates Tagore again

Mudra Banerjee

Dawn broke today with music. Morning came with the resonance of voices filling the air with song. Slumber slipped from our eyes today with a hope and a glory that we had not known in days. We woke up today, with a new life to celebrate the birth of one of the greatest poets of all times.

This land has always been one of tradition and celebration, of festivals and lights, of merry making and colours. But recently, the doors have been shut, fears had penetrated the joy and festivities had crept away to be replaced by sorrow. Our world had come to a standstill. No more did we rush to temples as dawn broke, we did not play with the colours for fear of the disease and we will not, as Puri, the land of Jagannath declares, pull those chariots this year. Easter was made great through phone calls , Good Friday was mourned at home. Shakespeare was born again, unannounced. Yet today, we rose again. Determined to dance, determined to sing, to welcome our poet again, to not let his divine birth go announced. We took to our phones, we took resort in the online educational applications, we dusted our white saris and ironed the red borders. The whole of Bengal today, amidst the sorrow and the fear, celebrated the man again, coming together through a world that is digital and virtual and our little happy abode.

Is it because we so desperately needed an escape from the despair of every day? Is it because we were so utterly bored that this new opportunity to dance and sing and make merry was seized by us in handfuls?
Or is it because the man we are celebrating today was the embodiment of it all? Is it because how beautifully his songs embrace today’s fear and today’s misgivings, how splendidly his poems engulf hope and faith and how gorgeously his lyrics resonate with our lives at every step and every turn?

Or above all reasons and above all causes, is it because we have always seen Tagore as the King that knows our lives like the back of his hand? Is it because each day begins with his song and each evening starts with his lyric? How great is our love for this divine man, how amassing our pride, how sturdy our faith, that we forget all woes and come together again, from all parts of the world, Canada and Dubai and Bhopal and Indore, to celebrate one man! How miraculously our Bengali betheren unite together to live our poet all together again!

 

But our dying banks are awashed with the tides of today and we will sail our boats with a cry to the lords, just like he has taught us to. We will take this leap of faith for our great poet, our king and our harbour of hope to make his birth as auspicious as ever.

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