You’re very clever at poking fun at weaklings.
Frail crumbling houses, crumbling doors, crumbling rafters,
crumbling wood, crumbling bodies, crumbling lives,
crumbling hearts —
the wind god winnows and crushes them all.
The poet says the wind is cleverly teasing the weak people and objects. He does not intend to praise the wind, but he says the wind can only make fun of the weak. Wind cannot move strong people or objects. The wind is making fun of weak things that are about to break and fall apart.
  • houses
  • doors
  • beams in the internal side of the roof
  • wood
  • lives of people
  • finally trying to crumble the hearts of people also, due to the devastation.
desctructive winds.jpg
The wind god winnows and crushes them all!
The wind god is trying to crush them by blowing air. Like how grains are filtered/winnowed for chaff, the wind god seemed to blow off all the weaklings like chaff! He says the wind has strength only against the weak, faint objects and people.
Winnowing refers to the process of blowing air through grains to remove the husks or chaff. The poet says the wind god winnows people and separates the weaklings from the strong people.
Winnowing process...
The poet calls wind God as it symbolises power. The poet wants people to be strong to face obstacles in our life. He repeats the words 'crumbling' to bring out the fact that it only crushes weak ones and not the strong ones. The poet indirectly conveys that if we stand against obstacles in life, we will succeed in our lives.
In addition, Bharati wrote this poem during the British rule of India prior to independence. The British have used a similar strategy of crushing the poor. India was only released from the bondage of British rule after the Indians strengthened themselves.
Meaning of difficult words:
Poking fun
making fun of someone, tease
Weaklingssomeone who is weak physically or emotionally
Frailweak, easily broken/damaged
Crumblingfalling part, into pieces
WinnowsWinnowing refers to a process of blowing air through grains to remove the husks or chaff
Raftersa beam forming part of the internal framework of a roof.
National Council of Educational Research and Training (2006). Beehive. Wind - A.K.Ramanujan (pp. 30-31). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.