The RÁMÁYAN of VÁLMÍKI - Part 2 - 113 books and stories free download online pdf in English

The RÁMÁYAN of VÁLMÍKI - Part 2 - 113

Canto CXIII. 
Bharat's Return.
Bearing the sandals on his head

Away triumphant Bharat sped,

And clomb, Śatrughna by his side,

The car wherein he wont to ride.

Before the mighty army went

The lords for counsel eminent,

Vaśishṭha, Vámadeva next,

Jáváli, pure with prayer and text.

Then from that lovely river they

Turned eastward on their homeward way:

With reverent steps from left to right

They circled Chitrakúṭa's height,

And viewed his peaks on every side

With stains of thousand metals dyed.

Then Bharat saw, not far away,

Where Bharadvája's dwelling lay,

And when the chieftain bold and sage

Had reached that holy hermitage,

Down from the car he sprang to greet

The saint, and bowed before his feet.

High rapture filled the hermit's breast,

Who thus the royal prince addressed:

“Say, Bharat, is thy duty done?

Hast thou with Ráma met, my son?”

The chief whose soul to virtue clave

This answer to the hermit gave:

“I prayed him with our holy guide:

But Raghu's son our prayer denied,

And long besought by both of us

He answered Saint Vaśishṭha thus:

“True to my vow, I still will be

Observant of my sire's decree:

Till fourteen years complete their course

That promise shall remain in force.”

The saint in highest wisdom taught,

These solemn words with wisdom fraught,

To him in lore of language learned

Most eloquent himself returned:

“Obey my rede: let Bharat hold

This pair of sandals decked with gold:

They in Ayodhyá shall ensure

Our welfare, and our bliss secure.”

When Ráma heard the royal priest

He rose, and looking to the east

Consigned the sandals to my hand

That they for him might guard the land.

Then from the high-souled chief's abode

I turned upon my homeward road,

Dismissed by him, and now this pair

Of sandals to Ayodhyá bear.”

To him the hermit thus replied,

By Bharat's tidings gratified:

“No marvel thoughts so just and true,

Thou best of all who right pursue,

Should dwell in thee, O Prince of men,

As waters gather in the glen.

He is not dead, we mourn in vain:

Thy blessed father lives again,

Whose noble son we thus behold

Like Virtue's self in human mould.”

He ceased: before him Bharat fell

To clasp his feet, and said farewell:

His reverent steps around him bent,

And onward to Ayodhyá went.

His host of followers stretching far

With many an elephant and car,

Waggon and steed, and mighty train,

Traversed their homeward way again.

O'er holy Yamuná they sped,

Fair stream, with waves engarlanded,

And then once more the rivers' queen,

The blessed Gangá's self was seen.

Then making o'er that flood his way,

Where crocodiles and monsters lay,

The king to Śringavera drew

His host and royal retinue.

His onward way he thence pursued,

And soon renowned Ayodhyá viewed.

Then burnt by woe and sad of cheer

Bharat addressed the charioteer:

“Ah, see, Ayodhyá dark and sad,

Her glory gone, once bright and glad:

Of joy and beauty reft, forlorn,

In silent grief she seems to mourn.”