What does the phrase "image of language" mean? What purpose does the comparison of the railway station with the image of language serve?This question is with reference to the poem "Railway Station"...

What does the phrase "image of language" mean? What purpose does the comparison of the railway station with the image of language serve?

This question is with reference to the poem "Railway Station" by Rabindranath Tagore. Please explain in detail.

Asked on by kimoyo

1 Answer | Add Yours

literaturenerd's profile pic

literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

The phrase "image of language", from the poem "Railway Station" by Rabindranath Tagore, helps to identify the way which Tagore "sees" language.

For Tagore, language is like a railway train. The train, like language, is "full of subtlety of rhythm" (like the train's rhythm on the tracks). Words, sometimes, flash by like the "untranslatable delicacies of colour" which one regards when on a train moving at high speeds.

Words, as elevated as the ones Tagore used, sometimes "appear as much the growth of the common soil as the grass and the rushes." The image of the language is both common, as the soil, and complex, as the delicately intertwined language of Tagore.

The train, like language, moves things (words) from place to place. Sometimes with thought and contemplation, other times without (in the same way people cram onto the train cars).

We’ve answered 318,959 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question