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The Excellences of Hari XVIII

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“O friend! This is indeed the highest prize,

Which fulfills the true function of the eyes,

To see the son of Nanda with his friends,

While he, with Rama, to the forest wends.

When Nanda’s child his bamboo flute does play,

The proud peacocks a fond welcome convey;

Driving the cattle through a shady grove,

His side glances awake the god of love.

What pious deed was by the bamboo done,

To gain such favour from Yashoda’s son,

To drink from Krishna’s lips with vast delight,

The nectar which is our exclusive right?

This Vrnda forest glorifies the earth,

Since Hari, incarnate, here took his birth;

And when he breaths into his bamboo flute,

The creatures of the forest all stand mute.

How blest the gentle herds of dappled deer!

That fearlessly approach him when they hear

The sweet toned flute he holds in his soft hands,

While ‘neath a shady Banyan tree he stands,

That music of the flute, which charms the mind,

Their mates, the black bucks, follow from behind.

The wives of the sky rangers, as they fly

In golden cars, across the azure sky,

The signs of heated passion do betray,

As hair and garments fall in disarray.

Behold mount Govardhan, O my sister!

Lord Hari’s friend and his chief minister;

To Ram and Krishna, and their cowherd friends,

With seemly gifts a warm welcome extends;

Lush grass to feed the cattle he supplies,

And all around are heard the peacock’s cries;

He bubbling brooks, and rills, and lakes, besides,

Sequestered groves and cool grottos provides.

Exalted is this hill above the rest,

When he by Ram and Krshna’s feet is pressed;

Varieties of sweet fruit he bestows,

And fragrant beds of flowers for repose.

So highly blest is Govardhan each day,

While we, in strict confinement, pine away.”

The cowherd maids their tender hearts express,

Relieving them of all their deep distress;

Their minds in Krishna’s beauty thus immersed,

While each to each his wondrous deeds rehearsed.

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