Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Walk Alone - Rabindranath Tagore

If no one answers your call
make a stride and walk alone
When everyone is closed and shut
Open your mind and speak alone.

Walk Alone, Walk Alone, Walk Alone

If they turn away and desert
and the wild path obstacles exerts
trample the thorns no matter the hurt
And Alone along blood-lined track traverse.

Walk Alone, Walk Alone, Walk Alone

If no one holds up the light
and a fierce storm troubles the night,
with the thunder flame of pain ignite
your heart, alone, and let it burn bright

Walk Alone, Walk Alone, Walk Alone

The above is my version of Rabindranath Tagore's great song "Ekala Cholo Ray," a favorite of Mahatma Gandhi.

This inspiring song often reminds me of Guru Gobind Singh's hymn "Deh Shiv Bar Mohe Shubh Karman Tay Kabhun Na Taron" or "Oh Shiva, Give me this boon that I may never shirk from auspicious duties." Tagore, the great Bengali poet/singer, winner of the nobel prize, explains further how to not shirk from auspicious duties. Here is a video of Shreya Ghoshal, one of the best current Indian singers in my view, singing this; it helps that Bengali is her native tongue. Stroll below for the translation of the song.



Bengali Lyrics:

যদি তোর ডাক শুনে কেউ না আসে তবে একলা চলো রে।
একলা চলো, একলা চলো, একলা চলো, একলা চলো রে॥
যদি কেউ কথা না কয়, ওরে ওরে ও অভাগা,
যদি সবাই থাকে মুখ ফিরায়ে সবাই করে ভয়---
তবে পরান খুলে
ও তুই মুখ ফুটে তোর মনের কথা একলা বলো রে॥
যদি সবাই ফিরে যায়, ওরে ওরে ও অভাগা,
যদি গহন পথে যাবার কালে কেউ ফিরে না চায়---
তবে পথের কাঁটা
ও তুই রক্তমাখা চরণতলে একলা দলো রে॥
যদি আলো না ধরে, ওরে ওরে ও অভাগা,
যদি ঝড়-বাদলে আঁধার রাতে দুয়ার দেয় ঘরে---
তবে বজ্রানলে
আপন বুকের পাঁজর জ্বালিয়ে নিয়ে একলা জ্বলো রে॥ video search

Romanized Lyrics
Jodi tor đak shune keu na ashe tôbe êkla chôlo re,
Êkla chôlo, êkla chôlo, êkla chôlo, êkla chôlo re.
Jodi keu kôtha na kôe, ore ore o ôbhaga,
Jodi shôbai thake mukh firaee shôbai kôre bhôe---
Tôbe pôran khule
O tui mukh fuţe tor moner kôtha êkla bôlo re.
Jodi shôbai fire jae, ore ore o ôbhaga,
Jodi gôhon pôthe jabar kale keu fire na chae---
Tôbe pôther kãţa
O tui rôktomakha chôrontôle êkla dôlo re.
Jodi alo na dhôre, ore ore o ôbhaga,
Jodi jhôŗ-badole ãdhar rate duar dêe ghôre---
Tôbe bojranôle
Apon buker pãjor jalie nie êkla jôlo re.

Tagore's English translation

If they answer not to thy call walk alone,
If they are afraid and cower mutely facing the wall,
O thou unlucky one,
open thy mind and speak out alone.

If they turn away, and desert you when crossing the wilderness,
O thou unlucky one,
trample the thorns under thy tread,
and along the blood-lined track travel alone.

If they do not hold up the light when the night is troubled with storm,
O thou unlucky one,
with the thunder flame of pain ignite thy own heart
and let it burn alone.