August 29, 2004

Sesquicentenaries, in passing...

As a COEPian, I'm often distraught at the necessity to change the name of my alma Mater from COEP to PIET ( yes, my venerable college now goes by this moniker) but, I can see several advantages to this uncomfortable gambit( maybe not for those of us who've grown accustomed to or rather have been steeped in the history of COEP as COEP & not PIET..but for the coming gerations??...hopefully, yes...)

As our college celebrates its sesquicentennary this year, a grand set of events are planned which will shadow our usually grand annual gathering into insignificance...APJ is expected to make an appearance, and..ahem!...I had a small part to play in the invitation process...
Anyways, this reminded me of a poem I'd jotted down last year for the college magazine, as a farewell paean prior to exit..here I (re) present it:

Where do we go from here…?

Shrouded in our secluded microcosm,
Secure in the comfort of past laurels,
Clouded by the mists of complacency,
We only remain kings of a stunted domain,
Safely (?) asleep in the haven of yesterday,
We ignore the threat that is plain to see.

Those who till yesterday measured
Themselves up to us,
Have moved on, leaving us behind,
At this crossroads then, what choice do we make?
Can we afford to stand and stare?
Dare we luxuriate in our glory days past?
Live hereafter in abject denial?
Or is it our cross to bear?

Soul searching introspection, a collective questioning
Of a sesquicentennial legacy is necessary,
The hour of reckoning is near,
Surely, we stand within the bounds of redemption,
But, only, if, someone chooses to ask,
Where do we go from here…?

As we don the mantle of a new name,
Let us solemnly resolve to take it
to unreached and unparalleled heights,
Let us be second to no one, and,
May the brotherhood under the triumvirate
Of Truth, Strength and Endurance,
Reign unchallenged in this, or any, land.

For those of you whose interest in my college has been aroused, lemme add that our college is one of the oldest engineering colleges in India, probably asia, alas! as things stand today, it doesn't count among the very best (though it does come in somewhere in the top 20), but I'm hopeful that things will change for the better..
Here's a link to my college's website...Link