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Poems by Nileen Putatunda


Neeraj Chopra 

On 6th August, 1945, "Little Boy" was dropped on Hiroshima; 

Today, on 7th August, 2021, you have become the greatest poster boy of Indian athletics 

When your javelin went like a bomb at the Tokyo Games 

Winning India's first gold in track and field at any Olympic Games; 

A radically different bomb from Hiroshima, 

You hurled stage fright out of contention 

And soon after your javelin touched the 87.58-metre mark, 

More than a billion Indian hearts exploded with unprecedented ecstasy; 

Young 23-year-old lion with your flowing mane and good looks, 

You dedicated your victory to that other majestic lion, 

The Flying Sikh, Milkha Singh, 

Who departed this life less than two months ago at 91 

And who specially blessed you today 

From where he is beaming at Guru Nanak's feet; 

Neeraj, you have entered a select realm 

From where you will rouse numberless Neerajs 

To go "Faster, Higher, Stronger - Together". 

(with gratitude to Indranil Basu; Adille Sumariwalla; Samir Ginde; Piyush Kumar; Sandeep, Sunny Sarkaria; Kuntal Roy) 

7th, 8th August, 2021, Kolkata 

Neeraj Chopra - I

Anointed one, all the saints of this holy land of India 

From diverse traditions 

Will hold your golden hand 

Every time that you throw the javelin henceforth; 

They will also ensure 

That you are an excellent human being 

With a golden heart. 


(with gratitude to my Guruji; Neeraj Chopra’s parents and family) 

8th August, 2021, Kolkata 


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