THE PENITENCE OF KRISHNA.
Thus lingered Krishna in the
deep, green wood,
And gave himself, too prodigal,
But Radha, heart-sick at his
Seeing her heavenly beauty
Withdrew; and, in a bower
Where nectarous blossoms wove
a shrine of shade,
Haunted by birds and bees
of unknown skies
She sate deep-sorrowful, and
sang this strain,
(What follows is to the Music
GURJJARI and the Mode YATI.)
Ah, my Beloved! taken with
Ah, my Beloved! dancing those
playing wrongful strains so well;
Ah, Krishna! Krishna
with the honeyed lip!
Ah, Wanderer into foolish
My Dancer, my
Delight! I love thee still.
O Dancer! strip thy peacock-crown
Rise! thou whose forehead
is the star of day,
With beauty for
its silver halo set;
Come! thou whose greatness
gleams beneath its shroud
Like Indra’s rainbow
shining through the cloud
Come, for I love
thee, my Beloved! yet.
Must love thee cannot
choose but love thee ever,
My best Beloved set
on this endeavor,
To win thy tender
heart and earnest eye
From lips but sadly sweet,
from restless bosoms,
To mine, O Krishna with the
mouth of blossoms!
To mine, thou
soul of Krishna! yet I sigh
Half hopeless, thinking of
And thee, dear Loiterer, in
the wood o’ertaken
With passion for
those bold and wanton ones,
Who knit thine arms as poison-plants
With twining cords their
flowers the braveries
That flash in
the green gloom, sparkling stars and stones.
My Prince! my Lotus-faced!
my woe! my love!
Whose broad brow, with the
Shames the bright
moon at full with fleck of cloud;
Thou to mistake so little
for so much!
Thou, Krishna, to be palm
to palm with such!
O Soul made for
my joys, pure, perfect, proud!
Ah, my Beloved! in thy darkness
Ah, Dancer! with the jewels
in thine ear,
Swinging to music
of a loveless love;
O my Beloved! in thy fall
That angels, sages, spirits
of the sky
Linger about thee,
watching in the grove.
I will be patient still, and draw
My one Beloved, sitting by the river
Under the thick kadambas with that throng:
Will there not come an end to earthly madness?
Shall I not, past the sorrow, have the gladness?
Must not the love-light shine for him ere long?
Shine, thou Light by
Shine, thou splendid star of heaven!
Be a lamp to Krishna’s feet,
Show to all hearts secrets sweet,
Of the wonder and the love
Jayadev hath writ above.
Be the quick Interpreter
Unto wisest ears of her
Who always sings to all, “I wait,
He loveth still who loveth late."
For (sang on that high Lady in
My soul for tenderness, not blame, was made;
Mine eyes look through his evil to his good;
My heart coins pleas for him; my fervent thought
Prevents what he will say when these are naught,
And that which I am shall be understood.
Then spake she to her maiden wistfully
(What follows is to the Music
MALAVAGAUDA and the Mode EKATALI.)
Go to him, win him hither, whisper
How he may find me if he searches well;
Say, if he will joys past his hope
Await him here; go now to him, and tell
Where Radha is, and that henceforth she charms
His spirit to her arms.
Yes, go! say, if he will, that
he may come
May come, my love, my longing, my desire;
May come forgiven, shriven, to me his home,
And make his happy peace; nay, and aspire
To uplift Radha’s veil, and learn at length
What love is in its strength.
Lead him; say softly I shall chide
And vex him with my angers; yet add this,
He shall not vainly sue for loving-kindness,
Nor miss to see me close, nor lose the bliss
That lives upon my lip, nor be denied
The rose-throne at my side.
Say that I Radha in
my bower languish
All widowed, till he find the way to me;
Say that mine eyes are dim, my breast all anguish,
Until with gentle murmured shame I see
His steps come near, his anxious pleading face
Bend for my pardoning grace.
While I what, did he
deem light loves so tender,
To tarry for them when the vow was made
To yield him up my bosom’s maiden splendour,
And fold him in my fragrance, and unbraid
My shining hair for him, and clasp him close
To the gold heart of his Rose?
And sing him strains which only
And make him captive with the silk-soft chain
Of twinned-wings brooding round him, and bestow
Kisses of Paradise, as pure as rain;
My gems, my moonlight-pearls, my girdle-gold,
Cymbaling music bold?
While gained for ever, I shall
dare to grow
Life to life with him, in the realms divine;
And Love’s large cup at happy
Yet ever to be filled his eyes and
Will meet in that glad look, when Time’s
Closes and shuts out Fate.
Listen to the unsaid
Of the song that Radha sings,
For the soul draws near to bliss,
As it comprehendeth this.
I am Jayadev, who write
All this subtle-rich delight
For your teaching. Ponder, then,
What it tells to Gods and men.
Err not, watching Krishna gay,
With those brown girls all at play;
Understand how Radha charms
Her wandering lover to her arms,
Waiting with divinest love
Till his dream ends in the grove.
For even now (she sang) I see him
Heart-stricken with the waste of heart he makes
Amid them; all the bows of their bent
Wound him no more: no more for all their
Plays he one note upon his amorous lute,
But lets the strings lie mute.
Pensive, as if his parted lips
“My feet with the dances
The music has dropped from the song,
There is no more delight in the lute-strings,
Sweet Shadows! what thing has gone wrong?
The wings of the wind have left fanning
The palms of the glade;
They are dead, and the blossoms seem dying
In the place where we played.
play no more, beautiful Shadows!
fancy came solemn and sad,
More sweet, with
the best of the pleasures we had:
I am not now the
Krishna who kissed you;
The Vision I saw
in my dancing
spoiled what you seem.
“Ah! delicate phantoms
With eyes that
looked lasting and true,
I awake, I have
seen her, my angel
Farewell to the
wood and to you!
Oh, whisper of wonderful pity!
Oh, fair face
Though thou be a vision, Divinest!
This vision is done.”
(Here ends that Sarga of the Gita
Govinda entitled KLESHAKESHAVO.)