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Mainstream, VOL LVI No 41 New Delhi September 29, 2018

To Mahatmaji

Saturday 29 September 2018

I know I am one among the forty crores of people

I have heard the announcement: the auspicious hour

Of my life has come and all cowardly thoughts

have melted away,

There is festival in my blood, please hold my

hand, Gandhiji,

We have fought, died and taken a vow here

We’ll wade through their dead bodies and

reach the invincible kingdom

Came flood, came death, came the storm of war

Great Famine left its signature on every road,

Every moment I was afraid the whole

history was under threat

Yet I kept my spirit up, although besieged

by death, and heaved no sigh of despair

There are signs left in the burning ghats in

towns and villages

And face to face with many a death I have

sung firmly of victory.

That is why today standing here, close to

our dear dreams,

It seems we are all living only in you—

We have got you after scaling many deaths

You will stand like a wall in this

devastated land.

Raising your hand to the horizon in all directions

you have sent us a call

And see millions of people are throbbing

with life in villages and town halls.

Sukanta Bhattacharya

(Translated from the original Bengali

by Jagannath Chakravorty)

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