You held a wild flower in your fingertips,
Idly you pressed it to indifferent lips,
Idly you tore its crimson leaves apart
Alas! it was my heart.
You held a wine-cup in your fingertips,
Lightly you raised it to indifferent lips,
Lightly you drank and flung away the bowl …
Alas! it was my soul.
Sarojini Naidu (1879–1949), also known by the sobriquet Nightingale of India, began writing at the age of twelve. Her Persian play, Maher Muneer, impressed the Nawab of Hyderabad. In 1905, her first collection of poems, named The Golden Threshold was published.