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Mainstream, Vol. XLVII, No 28, June 27, 2009

Tagore for Today

Thursday 2 July 2009, by Nikhil Chakravartty

The Editor’s Notebook in Mainstream (June 28, 1975) after the promulgation of Emergency and the imposition of press censorship appeared as follows:

Somewhere in the excitement of National Emergency, the editor has lost his notebook. However, Rabindranath Tagore has, in the abundance of his generosity, lent him his own notebook:

Freedom from fear is the freedom I claim for you, my Motherland!—fear, the phantom demon, shaped by your own distorted dreams;

Freedom from the burden of ages, bending your head, breaking your back, blinding your eyes to the beckoning call of the future;

Freedom from shackles of slumber wherewith you fasten yourself to night’s stillness, mistrusting the star that speaks of truth’s adventurous path;

Freedom from the anarchy of a destiny, whose sails are weakly yielded to blind uncertain winds, and the helm to a hand ever rigid and cold as Death;

Freeom from the insult of the dwelling in a puppet’s world, where movements are started through brainless wires, repeated through mindless habits; where figures wait with patient obedience for a master of show to be stirred into a moment’s mimicry of life.

June 27 N.C.

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