Ayyappa Paniker

(12 September 1930 - 23 August 2006 / Kavalam, Kerala, India)

Hey Gagarin - Poem by Ayyappa Paniker

Hey Gagarin, devourer of Space,
I come, a wayfarer, get off my tracks!
Yield today
to my moral concerns,
to my poetic fancy,
to my creative urge.
Before you measure out
all these expenses
so neglected and underdeveloped,
where man's speculations
had all these years
let the lord of creation graze,
all these heavenly worlds,
all these abysses,
before this moonbeam vanishes,
before my eyes close here,
hey Gagarin, devourer of Space,
I come, a wayfarer; get off my tracks!

Receive my greetings,
receive my congratulations,
but keep away from my arrow range,
my free thoughts surge forward,
breaking all fetters,
So get off my tracks!

Today the sun and the moon and the stars,
the impressions of evening, night and dawn,
my desires and hopes, this dear earth,
the perpetual movement at the movable and the immovable,
this beautiful infection of love,
the horizon, a witness to the rising and setting sun,
this broken beam of light dissolving in it;
these have all surrendered to your merciful dispensation!

Today the scientific mind
juggles with satellites,
and you have emerged as the leader
of the yakshas, kinnaras, devas and demons,
all of them highfliers,
turning east and west into meaningless terms,
bringing under measure what is deep and what is broad.

My friends and foes,
my master and servant,
my wakefulness, my sleep,
time that seemed to go slow for my sake;
these were upset when you flew;
but the creative spirit in me
hopes to share your immortality
on the rockbed of dreams.

Fellow-poets that stare in stupor!
Grow new wings to catch up with Science
across the recesses of outer space.
The pioneers have unfurled their flags on the heights;
break you your idols, and bless yourselves.
Nothing is empty any more, nothing is outside of us;
the whole universe is filled with subtle sensations.
Where is our telescope, where our thermometer?
Brandish the torch, fulfil the urge to create,
cut off the barriers of time and space,
keep the spirit ablaze that will burn up
every trace of death-dealing darkness!


Comments about Hey Gagarin by Ayyappa Paniker

  • (3/23/2019 11:25:00 PM)

    " Cut off barriers of time and space
    every trace of death dealing darkness" .
    A bold and forceful call given to fraternity of poets. Well deserved modern poem of the Day.
    (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Khairul Ahsan (3/23/2019 10:12:00 PM)

    'cut off the barriers of time and space,
    keep the spirit ablaze that will burn up
    every trace of death-dealing darkness! ' - these last three lines add a special meaning to the poem and summarizes it well.
    Congratulations on the poem's selection as the 'Modern Poem of the Day'!
    (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (3/23/2019 11:04:00 AM)

    I am not sure who Gagarin is but this poet seems to think modern astronomical development of satellites and telescopes is only an advancement for poets and that the poets have to catch up to such robust development of space as the scientists. (Report)Reply

    Khairul Ahsan(3/23/2019 10:18:00 PM)

    Yuri Gagarin was a Russian (former Soviet Union's) pilot and cosmonaut. He became the first human to journey into outer space when his Vostok spacecraft completed one orbit of the Earth on 12 April 1961.

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Edward Kofi Louis (3/23/2019 4:34:00 AM)

    Break your idols! ! ! And face the truth.

    Thanks for sharing this poem with us.
    (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Kumarmani Mahakul (3/23/2019 4:00:00 AM)

    keep the spirit ablaze that will burn up
    every trace of death-dealing darkness! ...impressive expression. Beautiful poem.
    (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Rajnish Manga (3/23/2019 3:57:00 AM)

    Measurer of the expanse of space, the first person to travel in outer space inspires everyone- from scientists to writers and poets. Thanks a lot.
    and you have emerged as the leader
    of the yakshas, kinnaras, devas and demons,
    (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (3/23/2019 1:52:00 AM)

    Google paid for every week online work from home 8000 to 10000 dollars.i have received first month $24961 and $35274 in my last month paycheck from Google and i work 3 to 5 hours a day in my spare time easily from home. It's really user friendly and I'm just so happy that I found out about it..go to this site for more details...

    So I started.., ., ..> > > > > > > > http: //www.GeoSalary.com
    (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Bernard F. Asuncion (3/23/2019 12:19:00 AM)

    One of the best poem of Ayyappa Paniker.......... (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
Read all 9 comments »



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?



Poem Submitted: Friday, September 7, 2012

Poem Edited: Friday, September 7, 2012


Famous Poems

  1. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  5. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  6. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  7. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  8. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
  9. Television
    Roald Dahl
  10. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You
    Pablo Neruda
[Report Error]