The RÁMÁYAN of VÁLMÍKI - Part 2 - 81 books and stories free download online pdf in English

The RÁMÁYAN of VÁLMÍKI - Part 2 - 81

81
Canto LXXXI. 
The Assembly.
Ere yet the dawn had ushered in

The day should see the march begin,

Herald and bard who rightly knew

Each nice degree of honour due,

Their loud auspicious voices raised,

And royal Bharat blessed and praised.

With sticks of gold the drum they smote,

Which thundered out its deafening note,

Blew loud the sounding shell, and blent

Each high and low-toned instrument.

The mingled sound of drum and horn

Through all the air was quickly borne,

And as in Bharat's ear it rang,

Gave the sad prince another pang.

Then Bharat, starting from repose,

Stilled the glad sounds that round him rose,

“I am not king; no more mistake:”

Then to Śatrughna thus he spake:

“O see what general wrongs succeed

Sprung from Kaikeyí's evil deed!

The king my sire has died and thrown

Fresh miseries on me alone.

The royal bliss, on duty based,

Which our just high-souled father graced,

Wanders in doubt and sore distress

Like a tossed vessel rudderless.

And he who was our lordly stay

Roams in the forest far away,

Expelled by this my mother, who

To duty's law is most untrue.”

As royal Bharat thus gave vent

To bitter grief in wild lament,

Gazing upon his face the crowd

Of pitying women wept aloud.

His lamentation scarce was o'er,

When Saint Vaśishṭha, skilled in lore

Of royal duty, dear to fame,

To join the great assembly came.

Girt by disciples ever true

Still nearer to that hall he drew,

Resplendent, heavenly to behold,

Adorned with wealth of gems and gold:

E'en so a man in duty tried

Draws near to meet his virtuous bride.

He reached his golden seat o'erlaid

With coverlet of rich brocade,

There sat, in all the Vedas read,

And called the messengers, and said:

“Go forth, let Bráhman, Warrior, peer,

And every captain gather here:

Let all attentive hither throng:

Go, hasten: we delay too long.

Śatrughna, glorious Bharat bring,

The noble children of the king,

Yudhájit and Sumantra, all

The truthful and the virtuous call.”

He ended: soon a mighty sound

Of thickening tumult rose around,

As to the hall they bent their course

With car, and elephant, and horse,

The people all with glad acclaim

Welcomed Prince Bharat as he came:

E'en as they loved their king to greet,

Or as the Gods Lord Indra meet.

The vast assembly shone as fair

With Bharat's kingly face

As Daśaratha's self were there

To glorify the place.

It gleamed like some unruffled lake

Where monsters huge of mould

With many a snake their pastime take

O'er shells, sand, gems, and gold.