Sundara Kãnda: Hanuman's Odyssey

By BS Murthy

Religion & spirituality, Action & adventure, Poetry, Magical realism, Fantasy

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73
8 mins

 

Canto 38 - Story to Tell

Respect with all due to her
Addressed Hanuman thus Seetha.

Surmise I can from thy words
What a woman of virtue makes.

It was not a fair offer
For the fair sex on my part
Help I them as piggyback.

Intent that thine not to touch
Someone other than thy husband
Made I know thee stay thus put.

One so chastely as Seetha
Is there ever in all three worlds!

Won’t I tell Ram in detail
Spoke thee what and all I saw.

Urge it’s mine to bring an end
To the suffering of thee both
That was at the back of mind
Offered when I thee my back.

Thought I fit to offer help
Takes as it some time for Ram
Reach to Lanka with his force.

Owing to my love for Ram
Without further loss of time
Thought I would fetch his beloved.

Canst if thou come back with me
Bestow something that soothes him.

Moved to core as Rama’s wife
Spoke with ardour to Hanuman.

Dost thou remind my man then
The story of that amorous crow.

It was during our outing
On the banks of Mandakin
Happened that in broad daylight.

Stayed we then at Siddhashram
Laid which was in thick garden.

Lay as I in Rama’s lap
Having lapped up garden path,
Got a crow at my bosom
Dropped I pallu chasing it.

Pushed as that I in dismay
Back it came to try its luck.

Lord mine witnessed that tussle
In which my breasts got exposed.

Amused by its eagerness
Teased as Ram with innuendos
Kept I blushing all the while.

Scolded him as I roundly
Me he took then in embrace
Smiled he sweetly to soothe me.

Tears that gushed then from my eyes
Streams as they made on my cheeks
Wiped them he to comfort me.

Sapped as I lay in his lap
Slumbered I for so long thus.

Woke up as I my man took
Turn his to rest on my thigh.

Finding my man in deep sleep
Back came that crow to resume
Beaked it flesh from my bosom.

Bore all as I fearing that
Gets disturbed my man in sleep
Blood in streams from my valley
Made its way to Rama’s chest.

Having woke up by its warmth
Saw my Lord then my torment.

Hurt as I was by that crow
Pearl like breasts mine turned corals.

Saw as Ram that eager crow
With its blood stained beak ’n all
Gripped was my Lord with anger.

Oh, that crow was Kakasur
Happened to be Indra’s son
Known to cover the earth and all
With the matching speed of sound.

Seeing Rama’s blood red eyes
Saw the danger Kakasur
Flew thus swiftly in panic.

Upset by the hurt it caused
To me beloved of his heart
Lost no time Ram to punish it.

Took he some reed lay nearby
Which with power of his mantra
Turned then into Brahmastra.

Chased that missile Kakasur
All the way to Indra’s place.

Even Lord of heavenly gods
Felt he could not help his son.

Back came that crow to save life
Sought he pardon from my Lord.

Though Ram came to forgive him
The weapon in use was sure to hurt.

As a way to save his life
Pleaded Kakasur with Ram
Let the damage be limited
To the right eye that he bore.

Having owed his life to Ram
Left then one-eyed Indra’s son.

Wonder how the one who used
Brahmastra on Kakasur
Fails to put the same to use
To punish the man who confines me?

Is it that Ram fails to know
Bitter would be his better half!

Having taken vow to help
All and sundry in distress
Is it fair for Ram to leave
His own one thus in the lurch?

Not the one to act in haste
Hath he patience of oceans.

Hath my suffering not tested
Patience his with vile Ravan?

Aims as he and shoots arrows
Escape none there for his foes.

If my Lord has some concern
For me forlorn spouse of his
Won’t he come to my rescue?

What of Lakshman his sibling
Moves not one inch in spite of
The loss of sister-in-law his?

Surely my Lord and Lakshman
On their own can bring to knees
Gods all there in heaven at once.

Looks like it’s my misfortune
That my Lord and his sibling
Should make no move to rescue
Me from clutches of this man.

Moved as Hanuman by lament
Of the hapless Rama’s wife
Tried he thus to cheer her up.

Swear I to the fact that Ram
Swallowed was by thy sorrow.

Now that I would head to Ram
With the tidings of our meet
Know its beginning of the end
Of thy sorrows of all hues.

For these demons to rue in time
Count on Ram to bring curtains
Down on Ravan’s Lankan stage.

It’s no big deal for Rama
To make cruel Ravan meet
His nadir with all his men.

Let me hasten to thy man
So to convey news of thine.

In spite of the hope it gave
Spoketh in teras thus Seetha.

Tell my man that I live by
Hope of making life with him.

What else can I wish for him
Rama’s dearest brother Lakshman
That he joins his wife soon
Whom he left to serve us both.

Sad it was that he gave up
Conjugal his life for long
So to take care of us both.

He is such a pet of Ram
For he is a handsome man.

Though he is my brother-in-law
Me he treats as mother no less.

If not for his loving care
In our exile in those woods
Life would have been hell for us.

Know that Rama loves Lakshman
Much more than me his own spouse.

Sees Ram their dad in Lakshman
And that helps him soothe himself.

To do the needful for my sake
Trust I would thou spur Lakshman.

Entrust I would thee the task
To goad my man to take me back.

Let my man know I wouldn’t live
Day one longer than one month.

Surely Rama can save me
From the sin of my suicide.

As a token of her love
To be passed on to her man
Gave him Seetha her diadem.

Took that Hanuman in reverence
Matched which well with ring finger.

Felt then Hanuman truly blessed
For the trust that Seetha placed.

Being in front of Seetha
Bore he Rama in his mind.

At length he came out of trance
Made he move to take her leave.

 

Canto 38 - Story to Tell

Respect with all due to her
Addressed Hanuman thus Seetha.

Surmise I can from thy words
What a woman of virtue makes.

It was not a fair offer
For the fair sex on my part
Help I them as piggyback.

Intent that thine not to touch
Someone other than thy husband
Made I know thee stay thus put.

One so chastely as Seetha
Is there ever in all three worlds!

Won’t I tell Ram in detail
Spoke thee what and all I saw.

Urge it’s mine to bring an end
To the suffering of thee both
That was at the back of mind
Offered when I thee my back.

Thought I fit to offer help
Takes as it some time for Ram
Reach to Lanka with his force.

Owing to my love for Ram
Without further loss of time
Thought I would fetch his beloved.

Canst if thou come back with me
Bestow something that soothes him.

Moved to core as Rama’s wife
Spoke with ardour to Hanuman.

Dost thou remind my man then
The story of that amorous crow.

It was during our outing
On the banks of Mandakin
Happened that in broad daylight.

Stayed we then at Siddhashram
Laid which was in thick garden.

Lay as I in Rama’s lap
Having lapped up garden path,
Got a crow at my bosom
Dropped I pallu chasing it.

Pushed as that I in dismay
Back it came to try its luck.

Lord mine witnessed that tussle
In which my breasts got exposed.

Amused by its eagerness
Teased as Ram with innuendos
Kept I blushing all the while.

Scolded him as I roundly
Me he took then in embrace
Smiled he sweetly to soothe me.

Tears that gushed then from my eyes
Streams as they made on my cheeks
Wiped them he to comfort me.

Sapped as I lay in his lap
Slumbered I for so long thus.

Woke up as I my man took
Turn his to rest on my thigh.

Finding my man in deep sleep
Back came that crow to resume
Beaked it flesh from my bosom.

Bore all as I fearing that
Gets disturbed my man in sleep
Blood in streams from my valley
Made its way to Rama’s chest.

Having woke up by its warmth
Saw my Lord then my torment.

Hurt as I was by that crow
Pearl like breasts mine turned corals.

Saw as Ram that eager crow
With its blood stained beak ’n all
Gripped was my Lord with anger.

Oh, that crow was Kakasur
Happened to be Indra’s son
Known to cover the earth and all
With the matching speed of sound.

Seeing Rama’s blood red eyes
Saw the danger Kakasur
Flew thus swiftly in panic.

Upset by the hurt it caused
To me beloved of his heart
Lost no time Ram to punish it.

Took he some reed lay nearby
Which with power of his mantra
Turned then into Brahmastra.

Chased that missile Kakasur
All the way to Indra’s place.

Even Lord of heavenly gods
Felt he could not help his son.

Back came that crow to save life
Sought he pardon from my Lord.

Though Ram came to forgive him
The weapon in use was sure to hurt.

As a way to save his life
Pleaded Kakasur with Ram
Let the damage be limited
To the right eye that he bore.

Having owed his life to Ram
Left then one-eyed Indra’s son.

Wonder how the one who used
Brahmastra on Kakasur
Fails to put the same to use
To punish the man who confines me?

Is it that Ram fails to know
Bitter would be his better half!

Having taken vow to help
All and sundry in distress
Is it fair for Ram to leave
His own one thus in the lurch?

Not the one to act in haste
Hath he patience of oceans.

Hath my suffering not tested
Patience his with vile Ravan?

Aims as he and shoots arrows
Escape none there for his foes.

If my Lord has some concern
For me forlorn spouse of his
Won’t he come to my rescue?

What of Lakshman his sibling
Moves not one inch in spite of
The loss of sister-in-law his?

Surely my Lord and Lakshman
On their own can bring to knees
Gods all there in heaven at once.

Looks like it’s my misfortune
That my Lord and his sibling
Should make no move to rescue
Me from clutches of this man.

Moved as Hanuman by lament
Of the hapless Rama’s wife
Tried he thus to cheer her up.

Swear I to the fact that Ram
Swallowed was by thy sorrow.

Now that I would head to Ram
With the tidings of our meet
Know its beginning of the end
Of thy sorrows of all hues.

For these demons to rue in time
Count on Ram to bring curtains
Down on Ravan’s Lankan stage.

It’s no big deal for Rama
To make cruel Ravan meet
His nadir with all his men.

Let me hasten to thy man
So to convey news of thine.

In spite of the hope it gave
Spoketh in teras thus Seetha.

Tell my man that I live by
Hope of making life with him.

What else can I wish for him
Rama’s dearest brother Lakshman
That he joins his wife soon
Whom he left to serve us both.

Sad it was that he gave up
Conjugal his life for long
So to take care of us both.

He is such a pet of Ram
For he is a handsome man.

Though he is my brother-in-law
Me he treats as mother no less.

If not for his loving care
In our exile in those woods
Life would have been hell for us.

Know that Rama loves Lakshman
Much more than me his own spouse.

Sees Ram their dad in Lakshman
And that helps him soothe himself.

To do the needful for my sake
Trust I would thou spur Lakshman.

Entrust I would thee the task
To goad my man to take me back.

Let my man know I wouldn’t live
Day one longer than one month.

Surely Rama can save me
From the sin of my suicide.

As a token of her love
To be passed on to her man
Gave him Seetha her diadem.

Took that Hanuman in reverence
Matched which well with ring finger.

Felt then Hanuman truly blessed
For the trust that Seetha placed.

Being in front of Seetha
Bore he Rama in his mind.

At length he came out of trance
Made he move to take her leave.


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