Ravi Iyer

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Tribute to my grandfather

 Mr. V.S. Arunachallam (24thApril 1897-30thAugust1956)

  

To The Hero Of Hind

Penned on 26th Jan 1946

  

Glorified Hero! Netaji dear!

Erstwhile dissenting from Congress fold,

Forlorn and jailed, yet far from fear,

Thou layest pining with plans untold!

The pangs of serfdom, wherever dealt,

Scorched and scarred thy countrywide mind!

Four hundred million pangs it felt

And burned to break the power unkind!

 

Unable to bear a moment more

Thy mother Hind in bonds to see,

Alone disguised, through guarding core,

Thou didst succeed thyself to free.

From ‘a Bose’ that broke the law and fled,

A General and a Ruler arose,

The realms’ adored, the peoples’ beloved,

And Hind’s own Netaji, no more ‘a Bose’!

Without a hate or pride or greed,

Hind’s honour and banner holding high

‘Mid Nippon’s sweep with lightning speed,

Thy loyal forces didst thou ply!

Thy deeds and what they mean to Hind

In immortal words of a gifted bard

Must be shrined, for immortal glory destined,

Though Fate restrained the right award!

  

Nineteenth century’s ninety-seventh year

Stands hallowed by thy nativity

And gives to all its natives a cheer

And stirs me to rhythmic brevity.

Be thou beyond or in thy frame,

Be this an elegy or a lay,

Accept its love, thou hovering Fame:

This A jubilant gift for thy birthday!

 

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