The Swami’s Call

This was a poem that had won the first prize for a poetry competition I had entered early last year. It focuses on the Indian struggle for independence. The “Swami” mentioned in the poem is Swami Vivekananda who was an inspiration for many during the freedom movement.

Everyday under the harsh sun

I labour and toil

The Sahib whips me

He hits at me.


Everyday I see him

Sitting under that Banyan tree

Relishing the fruits of my motherland

His steel blue eyes reflecting the contempt of his heart.


Everyday I watched him

Until I heard the swami’s call

Arise, he said

And so I did.


Awake, the swami said

And so I did

My brothers and I-

No, we slumber no more.


I saw the swami beckoning

I heard him say,

Stop not till your goal is reached

And so I went on.


No longer did the Sahib whip me

No longer did he trample my soul

No longer did he crush my spirit

No longer does he violate India.


We arose, we were one

India- my kingdom

Freedom- my bequest

We awoke, we emerged.


We heard the Swami’s call

We followed in his steps

The battle won, the fight has been fought

My country is now mine.



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