happy birthday to you, my dear student!

Amidst all tussle with politics and empty trashes, I breathed out a great relief today.

Today, when the second period was over, a boy of Class VII came close to me and said, "Sir, here is a pen for you! Take it!" He touched my feet in profound respect while his sentence was still half way to finish.

"Pen!"
"Yes, Sir, today I have bought a pen for you."
"But why?"
"I am enjoying my birthday today. Sir, please..., don't let the gift go into my satchel."

I accepted the priceless gift and touched his forehead.

The student hails from a poor family. His father works as a labour in a mansion-building group. His mother lets herself drop at four houses as a house-cleaner. He is even poorer than most other fellow students. Still he has bought a pen for me to show respect. Respect is not a one-way traffic, it has its own mutual class. It is, like inspiration, infectious. After a moment's hesitation and troubled tongue, I managed to ask him his desire. He again touched the core by saying the following row of words,

"Please bless me so that my father may extend my education life."

He was burning in poverty and glowing like a jubilant candle flicker. I tunneled my fingers through his obedient tuft of hair and released him.

He got released. When his unfortunate boyhood danced along the corridor, I tried to realize his pleasure and pain through his falling shadow, which was growing day by day to shadow his future.

I had my strength restored. The student might have no recommended book, he might have broken the rules of the well-off society. But he is a twig of love and purity, and an unchallenged myth.

...

I am alone with my computer now. I couldn't say that I can't shed blessings. What I can do is but blog a wish.

And that's why - I am whispering a wish to your blinking heart, my dear student,

"Happy Birth Day! May you live long and add my earthly span too."

10 comments:

Tom Stephenson said...

You are a real poet, Mr Sarkar. I hope that your wish for yourself and the boy comes true.

What a wonderful person you are, and I look forward to reading many more like this one. Tom.

Tom Stephenson said...

Sorry - this is a P.S. - I have just watched one of your video clips, and it reminded me so much of Satchyajit Ray. I hope not just because it is Indian.

I have watched many Ray films, and my favourites are the Apu Trilogy - what a wonderful blend of music and film! When the boy awakes in the first film - as his eyes open as the tablas start. absolutely wonderful. I must watch them again.

Cro Magnon said...

If only we'd all had teachers as wise as you, Mr Sarkar. I commend you.

Best wishes, Cro.

Strawberry said...

Hello...
Happy birth day to him ...
I'm sure you are a special person for him ..
I hope all teachers being like you...

Thank you,
See yaa...

ThoseThr3Words/Spiderette said...

Hello, there. Thanks for following our blog! I was very moved by this post and read it to my 18 year old son, who felt the same. Teachers - and indeed, people- like yourself are few and far between and I hope your wish for yourself and your student come true.
It reminded me of my own mother who was a talented pupil back in the 1930's, but from a very poor family, with a near blind father and a handicapped mother. She was entered into a scholarship programme which she deliberately failed because she knew there would be no way her parents could fund her education. Consequently, to the dismay of her teachers, she left school at 14 and went into full time employment in a factory.
I wish all teachers could show the care and respect you show for your pupils.
Kind Regards,
Claire

Sandra said...

What a delightful and inspiring account. You sound like a wonderful teacher. And you express yourself well too.

Mukesh said...

Sarkar bhai.... It touched the heart. I also wanna be a teacher in future. Then U must be my ideal bhai.

Happy b'day to that boy from my side also.

Nice post, coz u understood the feeling of a very poor boy and managed a bit of time to blog his wish.

RA said...

Beautiful! :)

Arati Harikumar said...

hi!!
Thank u for following my blog....i loved what you have written..reminded me of some very special teachers I had in school...do keep writing..i totally love what you write!

monsoon-dreams said...
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