Sacred Texts  Hinduism  Index  Previous  Next 


Against his judgment sorely pressed
By his imperious lord's behest,
Márícha threats of death defied
And thus with bitter words replied:
'Ah, who, my King, with sinful thought
This wild and wicked counsel taught,
By which destruction soon will fall
On thee, thy sons, thy realm and all?
Who is the guilty wretch who sees
With envious eye thy blissful ease,
And by this plan, so falsely shown,
Death's gate for thee has open thrown!
With souls impelled by mean degire
Thy foes against thy life conspire.
They urge thee to destruction's brink,
And gladly would they see thee sink.
Who with base thought to work thee woe
This fatal road has dared to show,
And, triumph in his wicked eye,
Would see thee enter io and die!
To all thy counsellors, untrue,
The punishment of death is due,
Who see thee tempt the dangerous way,
Nor strain each nerve thy foot to stay.
Wise lords, whose king, by passion led,
The path of sin begins to tread,
Restrain him while there yet is time:
But thine,--they see nor heed the crime.
These by their master's will obtain
Mirit and fame and joy and gain.
"Tis only by their master's grace
That servaits hold their lofty place.
But when tbc monarch stoops to sin
They lose each joy they strive to win,
And all the people people high and low
Fall in the common overthrow.

p. 277

Merit and fame and honour spring,
Best of the mighty, from the king.
So all should strive with heart and will
To keep the king from every ill.
Pride, violence, and sullen hate
Will ne'er maintain a monarch's state,
And those who cruel deeds advise
Must perish when their master dies,
Like drivers with their cars o'erthrown
In places rough with root and stone.
The good whose holy lives were spent
On duty's highest laws intent,
With wives and children many a time
Have perished for another's crime.
Hapless are they whose sovereign lord,
Opposed to all, by all abhorred,
Is cruel-hearted, harsh, severe:
Thus might a jackal tend the deer.
Now all the giant race await,
Destroyed by thee, a speedy fate,
Ruled by a king so cruel-souled,
Foolish in heart and uncontrolled.
Think not I fear the sudden blow
That threatens now to lay me low:
I mourn the ruin that I see
Impending o'er thy host and thee.
Me first perchance will Ráma kill,
But soon his hand thy blood will spill.
I die, and if by Ráma slain
And not by thee, I count it gain.
Soon as the hero's face I see
His angry eyes will murder me,
And if on her thy hands thou lay
Thy friends and thou are dead this day.
If with my help thou still must dare
The lady from her lord to tear,
Farewell to all our days are o'er,
Lanká and giants are no more.
In vain, in vain, an earnest friend,
     I warn thee, King, and pray.
   Thou wilt not to my prayers attend,
     Or heed the words I say
   So men when life is fleeting fast
     And death's sad hour is nigh,
   Heedless and blinded to the last
     Reject advice and die.'

Next: Canto XLII.: Márícha Transformed.