I felt I saw your face. …/Tagore

Early morning at Soro Boro Weva, Sri Lanka 2008. Photograph©Chulie de Silva

I felt I saw your face, and I launched my boat in the dark.

Now the morning breaks in smiles and the spring flowers are in bloom.

Yet should the light fail and the flowers fade I will sail onward.

When you made mute signal to the world slumbered and the darkness was bare.

Now the bells ring loud and boat is laden with gold.

Yet should the bells become silent

and my boat be empty I will sail onward

3 thoughts on “I felt I saw your face. …/Tagore

  1. So glad you are sharing these verses. Now I’ll be looking forward to starting every day with another.

  2. I can only quote on a memory of Sorabora wewa:

    “. Among father’s favourites verses were a gaemi kaviya in praise of Sorabora wewa – which Seligman says the Veddahs sang at the Kiri koraha ceremony – beginning:

    Paalu rata-i Vanni-ye etha-nin oha ta
    Golu gena panithi veli-hinniyo aenga ta
    Reru avith diye-kelinaa sonda ruwa ta
    Yaa-lu thopith giyado horabora weva ta?

    “It’s a waste land, the Vanni, from here onwards,
    Screaming, the she-bear will pounce on you
    And the Seruwas sport in the water, so lovely to see eye –
    And you, Friend, have you, too, been to Sorabora lake?”

    and ending:

    Horabora waevey weva degodey vananrata rey
    Kapaa gal kaanu egodata eliya ke ley
    Nelaa mal pahan veherata eganthe rey
    Horabora wewa nudutu aes motada pin ke ley?

    “Deep in the forest, all around the lake
    Rock-cut sluices drain the water to the other side.
    You who offer flowers and light lamps at the shrine there,
    What use is merit to you, whose eyes have not beheld Sorabora?”


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