Frederick James Gould.

The divine archer, founded on the Indian epic of the Ramayana, with two stories from the Mahabharata online

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So he sprang to his feet, and brushed off the
dry leaves that clung to his clothes.

" There is your basket of fruit," he cried.

" Fetch it to-morrow, Satyavan. We have
enough to do to find our way in the dark.
But I will carry the axe."

She carried the axe in her left hand, and her
right arm was about his waist; and his left
arm was about her neck; and so they wended
their way through the jungle; nor did bear or
tiger harm them.

The sky was becoming grey when they
reached the hamlet where the old king and
queen and their few companions lived. They
heard voices crying eagerly. A shout arose
when the prince and princess were seen.

" My children! " cried the king.

" Father! " exclaimed Satyavan. " How is
this? You were able to see me? "

" My son, my eyes can see once more. I
know not how the marvel came about, but I
do know I can see my son. And you, dear
Savitri, for the first time can I now look
upon my faithful daughter! "

After he had held them some moments, and
gazed at them both with joy, he asked:



WHAT LOVE CAN DO 103

" And where have you been all the night ?
Tell me, Satyavan, what kept you so
long? "

" Father," said Savitri, " he does not know all
that took place in the night. Let me tell the
tale."

So they sat down king, queen, prince,
princess, and their comrades and loyal friends,
and the soft voice of Savitri told :

How they wandered in the forest;

How the curse had been foretold by Narad,
the sage, and how it must be fulfilled at the
end of the year;

How Satyavan died;

How Death came;

And how she had followed Death and what
had been said.

Now, while the king and his friends thus
listened, and their hearts were moved by the
story, a great noise was heard in the forest.
Along the glade they saw a crowd of people
approach soldiers, officers, citizens.

" News, good news! " the people cried. ' The
tyrant who took the throne by unjust means
and cruel power has been overthrown. Come
back to us, dear king. Blind though you are,



io 4 WHAT LOVE CAN DO

you shall at least know that we gather round
you in true service."

" Thanks be to the shining gods, my people,"
said the old king, " I can see you all; and I
will go with you, and see my kingdom once
again."

Note. The story is based on Sir Edwin Arnold's poem
" Savitri, or Love and Death," in his Indian Idylls : also
on the version of the same episode in Mr. Romesh Chunder
Dutt's translation of the Mahabharata.



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Online LibraryFrederick James GouldThe divine archer, founded on the Indian epic of the Ramayana, with two stories from the Mahabharata → online text (page 5 of 5)