Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Raslila Poem

One of the poems which was recited while James Tod saw the rāslīlā is an excellent example of celebrating Krsna’s “roughish and deceitful tricks” by Rādhā, Jasodā and consequently by Braj poets and their audience:
सुनिहो जसोदा फरियाद करों तकसीर सुनो अपने नट की ।
अहली जु चले बिँदराबन जाएँ जहाँ बाहँ झकझोर लियो झटकी ।
अहली मन मैं सुख छाइ रहे सखियाँ मुसकाई सबै सटकी ।
दधि माखन लूट लियो सगरो चट चौपट मैं मटकी पटकी ।।
तुम ग्वलिन नार गँवार बड़ी कोऊ पावत ना तुम्हरे धट की ।
दस बीस मिलो बन को जो चलो तुम मानत ना अपनी हटकी ।
…रस कुंजन मैं जु किलोल करो हमसे (न) कहो मटकी पटकी ।।

“Listen, Jasodā, this is my complaint. Hear the mischief of your actor:“When filled with joy, I went to Vrindāban, where he frolickingly wrenched my arms,“Joy spread in [his] mind and my smiling companions moved away from us.“He took away all my curd and butter and my earthen jar instantly smashed in plain view.“Oh, cowherd woman, you are a big fool; nobody can understand [the matter] of your heart.“Go in groups of ten or twenty when you go to the Forest (Vrindāban)! –You did not consider my words, but only your stubborn [ways].…“You sport in groves of love and still speak of the smashed jar?”

*Bangha Imre, The First Published Anthology of Hindi Poets – Thomas Broughton’s Selection from the Popular Poetry of the Hindoos 1814, Delhi: Rainbow Publishers Limited, 2000, pg. 65-66