Gitanjali 88

Deity of the ruined temple! The
broken strings of Vina sing no more
your praise. The bells in the evening
proclaim not your time of worship. 
The air is still and silent about you.
   In your desolate dwelling comes the
vagrant spring breeze. It brings the 
tidings of flowers-the flowers that for
your worship are offered no more. 
   Your worshipper of old wanders ever 
longing for favour still refused. In the 
eventide, when fires and shadows mingle 
with the gloom of dust, he wearily 
comes back to the ruined temple with
hunger in his heart.
   Many a festival day comes to you
in silence, deity of the ruined temple.
Many a night of worship goes away 
with lamp unlit.
   Many new images are built by 
masters of cunning art and carried to
the holy stream of oblivion when their 
time is come.
   Only the deity of the ruined temple
remains unworshipped in deathless


From Gitanjali (Macmillan and Co., Limited, 1913) by Rabindranath Tagore. This poem is in the public domain.