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But Sítá viewed with wild affright
The heroes hurried from her sight.
She tossed her shapely arms on high,
And shrieked aloud her bitter cry:
'Ah, the dread giant bears away
The princely Ráma as his prey,
Truthful and pure, and good and great,
And Lakshman shares his brother's fate.
The brindled tiger and the bear
My mangled limbs for food will tear.
Take me, O best of giants, me,
And leave the sons of Raghu free.'

Then, by avenging fury spurred,
Her mournful cry the heroes heard,
And hastened, for the lady's sake,
The wicked monster's life to take.
Then Lakshman with resistless stroke
The foe's left arm that held him broke,
And Rama too, as swift to smite,
Smashed with his heavy hand the right.
With broken arms and tortured frame
To earth the fainting giant came,
Like a huge cloud, or mighty rock
Bent, sundered by the levin's shock.
Then rushed they on, and crushed and bent
Their foe with arms and fists and feet,
And nerved each mighty limb to pound
And bray him on the level ground.
Keen arrows and each biting blade
Wide rents in breast and side had made;
But crushed and torn and mangled, still
The monster lived they could not kill.
When Ráma saw no arms might slay
The fiend who like a mountain lay,
The glorious hero, swift to save
In danger, thus his counsel gave:
' O Prince of men, his charmed life
No arms may take in battle strife:
Now dig we in this grove a pit
His elephantine bulk to fit,
And let the hollowed earth enfold
The monster of gigantic mould.'

This said, the son of Raghu pressed
His foot upon the giant's breast.
With joy the prostrate monster heard
Victorious Ráma's welcome word,
And straight Kakutstha's son, the best
Of men, in words like these addressed:
'I yield, O chieftain, overthrown
By might that vies with Indra's own.
Till now my folly-blinded eyes
Thee, hero, failed to recognize.
Happy Kaus'alyá! blest to be
The mother of a son like thee!
I know thee well, O chieftain, now:
Ráma, the prince of men, art thou.
There stands the high-born Maithil dame,
There Lakshman, lord of mighty fame.
My name was Tumburu  1, for song
Renowned among the minstrel throng:
Cursed by Kuvera's stern decree
I wear the hideous shape you see.
But when I sued, his grace to crave,
The glorious God this answer gave:
'When Ráma, Das'aratha's son,
Destroys thee and the light is won,
Thy proper shape once more assume,
And heaven again shall give thee room.'
When thus the angry God replied,
No prayers could turn his wrath aside,
And thus on me his fury fell
For loving Rambhá's  2 charms too well.
Now through thy favour am I freed
From the stern fate the God decreed,
And saved, O tamer of the foe,

p. 233

By thee, to heaven again shall go.
A league, O Prince, beyond this spot
Stands holy S'arabhanga's cot:
The very sun is not more bright
Than that most glorious anchorite:
To him, O Ráma, quickly turn,
And blessings from the hermit earn.
First under earth my body throw,
Then on thy way rejoicing go.
Such is the law ordained of old
For giants when their days are told:
Their bodies laid in earth, they rise
To homes eternal in the skies.'
   Thus, by the rankling dart oppressed,
Kakutstha's offspring he addressed:
In earth his mighty body lay,
His spirit fled to heaven away.
   Thus spake Virádha ere he died;
And Ráma to his brother cried:
'Now dig we in this grove a pit
His elephantine bulk to fit.
And let the hollowed earth enfold
This mighty giant fierce and bold.'
   This said, the valiant hero put
Upon the giant's neck his foot.
His spade obedient Lakshman plied,
And dug a pit both deep and wide
By lofty souled Virádha's side.
Then Raghu's son his foot withdrew,
And down the mighty form they threw;
One awful shout of joy he gave
And sank into the open grave.
The heroes, to their purpose true,
In fight the cruel demon slew,
   And radiant with delight
Deep in the hollowed earth they cast
The monster roaring to the last,
   In their resistless might.
Thus when they saw the warrior's steel
No life-destroying blow might deal,
   The pair, for lore renowned,
Deep in the pit their hands had made
The unresisting giant laid,
   And killed him neath the ground.
Upon himself the monster brought
From Ráma's hand the death he sought
   With strong desire to gain:
And thus the rover of the night
Told Ráma, as they strove in fight,
That swords might rend and arrows smite
   Upon his breast in vain.
Thus Ráma, when his speech he heard,
The giant's mighty form interred,
   Which mortal arms defied.
With thundering crash the giant fell,
And rock and cave and forest dell
   With echoing roar replied.
The princes, when their task was done
And freedom from the peril won,
   Rejoiced to see him die.
Then in the boundless wood they strayed,

Like the great sun and moon displayed
   Triumphant in the sky. 1

        * * * * *


232:1 Somewhat inconsistently with this part of the story Tumburu is mentioned in Book II, Canto XII as one of the Gandharvas or heavenly minstrels summoned to perform at Bharadvája's feast.

232:2 Rambhá appears in Book I, Canto LXIV as the temptress of Visvámitra.

Next: Canto V.: S'arabhanga.