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There breathing still with slow faint sighs
Lay Báli on the ground: his eyes,

p. 351

Damp with the tears of death, he raised,
On conquering Sugríva gazed,
And then in clearest speech expressed
The tender feelings of his breast;
'Not to my charge, Sugríva, lay
Thine injuries avenged to-day;
But rather blame resistless Fate
That urged me on infuriate.
Fate ne'er agreed our lives to bless
With simultaneous happiness:
To dwell like brothers side by side
In tender love was still denied.
The Vánars' realm is thine to-day:
Begin, O King, thy rightful sway;  1
for I must go at Yama's call
To sojourn in his gloomy hall;
Must part and leave this very hour
My life, my realm, my kingly power,
And go instead of these to gain
Bright glory free from spot and stain.
Now at thy hands one boon I seek
With the last words my lips shall speak,
And, though it be no easy thing,
perform the task I give thee, King.
This son of mine, no foolish boy,
Worthy of bliss and nursed in joy,--
See, prostrate on the ground he lies,
The hot tears welling from his eyes--
The child I love so well, more sweet
Than life itself, for woe unmeet,--
To him be kindly favour shown:
O guard and keep him as thine own.
Retain him ever by thy side,
His father, helper, friend, and guide.
From fear and woe his young life save,
And give him all his father gave.
Then Tárá's son in time shall be
Brave, resolute, and famed like thee,
And march before thee to the fight
Where stricken fiends shall own his might.
While yet a tender stripling, fame
Shall bruit abroad his warrior name,
And brigbtlv shall his glory shine
For exploits worthy of his line.
Child of Sushen, 2 my Tárá well
Obscurest lore can read and tell;
And, trained in wondrous art, divines
Each mystery of boding signs.
Her solemn warning ne'er despise,
Do boldly what her lips advise;
For things to come her eye can see,
And with her words events agree.
And for the son of Raghu's sake
The toil and danger undertake:

For breach of faith were grievous wrong,
Nor wouldst thou be unpunished long.
Now, brother, take this chain of gold,
Gift of celestial hands of old,
Or when I die its charm will flee,
And all its might be lost with me.'

The loving speech Sugríva heard.
And all his heart with woe was stirred.
Remorse and gentle pity stole
Each thought of triumph from his soul:
Thus fades the light when Ráhu 1b mars
The glory of the Lord of Stars. 2b
All angry thoughts were staved and stilled
And kindly love his bosom filled.
His brother's word the chief obeyed
And took the chain as Báli prayed.
On little Angad standing nigh
The dying hero fixed his eye,
And, ready from this world to part,
Spoke the fond utterance of his heart:

'Let time and place thy thoughts employ:
In woe be strong, he meek in joy.
Accept both pain and pleasure, still
Obedient to Sugríva's will.
Thou hast, my darling, from the first
With tender care been softly nursed;
But harder days, if thou wouldst win
Sugríva's love, must now begin.
To those who hate him ne'er incline,
Nor count his foe a friend of thine.
In all thy thoughts his welfare seek,
Obedient, lowly, faithful, meek.
Let no rash suit his bosom pain,
Nor yet from due requsts abstain.  3b
Each is a grievous fault, between
The two is round the happy mean.'

Then Báli ceased: his eyeballs rolled
In stress of anguish uncontrolled
His massive teeth were bared to view,
And from the frame the spirit flew.
Their lord and leader dead, the crowd
Of noblest Vánars shrieked aloud:
'Since thou, O King, hast sought the skies
All desolate Kishkindhá lies.
Her woods, where Vánars loved to rove,
Are empty now, and hill and grove.
From every eye the light is fled,
Since thou, our mighty lord, art dead.
Thine was the unwearied arm that bore
The brunt of deadly fight of yore
With Golabh the Gandharva, when,
Lasting through five long years and ten,

p. 352

The dreadful conflict knew no stay
In gloom of night, in glare of day;
And when the fifteenth year had past
Thy dire opponent fell at last.
If such a foeman fell beneath
Our hero's arm and awful teeth
Who freed us from our terror, how
Is conquering Báli fallen now?'

Then when they saw their leader slain
Great anguish seized the Vánar train,
Weeping their mighty chief, as when
In pastures near a lion's den
The cows by sudden fear are stirred,
Slain the bold bull who led the herd.
And hapless Tárá sank below
The whelming waters of her woe,
Looked upon Báli's face and fell
Beside him whom she loved go well,
Like a young creeper clinging round
A tall tree prostrate on the ground.


350:1b Sugríva and Angad.

351:1 Angad himself, being too young to govern, would be Yuvarája or heir- apparent.

351:2 Sushena was the son of Varuna the God of the sea,

351:1b A demon with the tail of a dragon, that causes eclipses by endeavouring to swallow the sun and moon.

351:2b The Lord of Stars is the Moon.

351:3b Or the passage may be interpreted: 'Be neither to obsequious or affectionate, nor wanting in due respect of love.'

Next: Canto XXIII.: Tárá's Lament.