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A Parting
(24 May 1899 - 29 August 1976 / Bardhaman / India)

A Parting

It was no passing encounter on the street,
dear friend.
It was no momentary conversation
on the side-walk.
It was no casual handclasp
at the sudden close of a trip.
You came close to our soul
unfolding yourself moment by moment.
You came not as a conqueror
but as a comrade.
With your smile you won
our hearts.
You did not occupy the throne
and become a king
You entrenched yourself in our hearts
and became a sovereign there.
And so you suffered more than us
when the time came
to say goodbye and depart,
Through timeless acquaintance
you had become one of our own.
Now in our million bleeding hearts
you will forever live as a
tender grief.
I know I'll see you again,
dear friend.
Ours was no casual meeting
on the side-walk.

[Translation: Kabir Chowdhury]

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