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That shout, which shook the land with fear,
In thunder smote on Báli's ear,
Where in the chamber barred and closed
The sovereign with his dame reposed.
Each amorous thought was rudely stilled,
And pride and rage his bosom filled.
His angry eyes flashed darkly red,
And all his native brightness fled,
As when, by swift eclipse assailed,
The glory of the sun has failed.
While in his fury uncontrolled
He ground his teeth, his eyeballs rolled,
He seemed a lake wherein no gem
Of blossom decks the lotus stem.
He heard, and with indignant pride
Forth from the bower the Vánar hied.
And the earth trembled at the beat
And fury of hit hastening feet.
But Tára to her consort flew,
Her loving arms around him threw.
And trembling and bewildered, gave
Wise counsel that might heal and save:
'O dear my lord, this rage control
That like a torrent floods thy soul,
And cant these idle thoughts away
Like faded wreath of yesterday,
O tarry till the morning light,
Then, if thou wilt, go forth and fight.

p. 342

Think not I doubt thy valour, no;
Or deem thee weaker than thy foe,
Yet for a while would have thee stay
Nor see thee tempt the fight to-day.
Now list, my loving lord, and learn
The reason why I bid thee turn.
Thy foeman came in wrath and pride,
And thee to deadly fight defied,
Thou wentest out: he fought, and fled
Sore wounded and discomfited.
But yet, untaught by late defeat,
He comes his conquering foe to meet.
And calls thee forth with cry and shout:
Hence spring, my lord, this fear and doubt.
A heart so bold that will not yield,
But yearns to tempt the desperate field,
Such loud defiance, fiercely pressed,
On no uncertain hope can rest.
So lately by thine arm o'erthrown,
He comes not back, I ween, alone.
Some mightier comrade guards his side,
And spurs him to this burst of pride.
For nature made the Vánar wise:
On arms of might his hope relies;
And never will Sugríva seek
A friend whose power to save is weak.
Now listen while my lips unfold
The wondrous tale my Angad told.
Our child the distant forest sought,
Aud, learnt from spies, the tidings brought.
Two sons of Das'arathu, sprung
From old Ikshváku, brave and young,
Renowned in arms, in war untamed--
Ráma and Lakshman are they named--
Have with thy foe Sugríva made
A league of love and friendly aid.
Now Ráma, famed for exploit high,
Is bound thy brother's firm ally,
Like fires of doom  1 that ruin all
He makes each foe before him fall.
He is the suppliant's sure defence,
The tree that shelters innocence.
The poor and wretched seek his feet:
In him the noblest glories meet.
With skill and knowledge vast and deep
His sire's commands he loved to keep;
With princely gifts and graces stored
As metals deck the Mountains' Lord. 2
Thou canst not, O my hero, stand
Before the might of Ráma's hand;
For none may match his powers or dare
With him in deeds of war compare.
Hear, I entreat, the words I say,
Nor lightly turn my rede away.
O let fraternal discord cease,
And link you in the bonds of peace.
Let consecrating rites ordain

Sugríva partner of thy reign.
Let war and thoughts of conflict end,
And be thou his and Ráma's friend,
Each soft approach of love begin.
And to thy soul thy brother win;
for whether here or there he be,
Thy brother still, dear lord, is he.
Though far and wide these eyes I strain
A friend like him I seek in vain.
Let gentle words his heart incline,
And gifts and honours make him thine,
Till, foes no more, in love allied,
You stand as brothers side by side.
Thou in high rank wast wont to hold
Sugríva, formed in massive mould;
Then come, thy brother's love regain,
For other aids are weak and vain.
If thou would please my soul, and still
Preserve me from all fear and ill,
I pray thee by thy love be wise
And do the thing which I advise.
Assuage thy fruitless wrath, and shun
The mightier arms of Raghu's son;
For Indra's peer in might is he,
A foe too strong, my lord, for thee.'


341:1 The store of merit accumulated by a holy or austere life secures only a temporary seat in the mansion of bliss. When the lapse of time this store is exhausted, return to earth is unavoidable.

342:1 The conflagration which destroys the world at the end of a Yuga or age

342:2 Himalaya.

Next: Canto XVI.: The Fall of Báli.