Ramayan Part 03 - The Sage Viswamitra

The four princes grew up well,
Strong, virtuous, brave and lovable,
As archers and warriors in every field
They were trained and moulded.

One day the sage Viswamitra
Arrived there to see Dasaratha,
Who didn’t, his visit, expect,
Received him with full respect.

Viswamitra was a king once,
Who did his severe penance,
For one reason or the other,
Hundreds of years together.

With his army, he went out once,
Met the Sage Vasishta by chance,
And all the guests of his entourage
Were fed sumptuously by the Sage.

How it was possible for a sage,
To feed such an army huge?
Never before, he saw this kind.
Its reason, he was eager to find.

Vasishta called Sabala his cow,
And told the king as to how,
It was a fountain of plenty,
That gave food in bounty.

The king wanted to take it,
But the sage refused to give it.
He was bent upon somehow
To use force and take the cow.

The poor distressed cow,
Stood against his vow,
But his madness by now,
Drove him fight with bow.

Vasishta held his hand stick,
That received the arrow’s prick,
Thus the King’s red hot rage
Couldn’t harm the smiling sage.

Out of his utter frustration,
Broken down by humiliation,
He gave up his throne at once,
To the forest, went for penance.

The years of penance nonstop,
His fame, as a sage, rose to the top.
Unhappy with the title “Raja Rishi”,
He observed rigorous austerity.

Until the Sage Vasishta accepted
From his spoken word and said
That a “Brahma Rishi” he was,
He didn't give up his cause.

To the world his contribution,
By his act of self-determination,
Earned him all the reputation,
He deserved on each occasion.

by Rajaram Ramachandran

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