Magazine : Matrusri English
Language : English
Volume Number : 2
Month : July
Issue Number : 4
Year : 1967


Like the owl on the temple tower,

I proclaim my own greatness

 Like the dust am I wafted high

by the winds of flattery.

Like the drying lump of clay

 I crumble when I’m criticised.

I am like the abandoned well in a forest

 nothing but bones within and thorns without!


Like the sediment in a pond

 that’s disturbed by a man’s foot,

 every care stirs the depths of myself.

Like the desert camel

that runs after distant mirages

 mistaking them for drinking water,

Like the chamoy

that runs hither and thither

 lured by some sweet scent,

I am running on the life’s way for something

I know not what!


Even like unto the stone no tears stick to my heart.

 I am, like a fish in a small pond

Or the wick in a lamp,

Hoping that I shall last forever.

 Even as I approach the gallows I scarce realise

 that every step takes me nearer to death.


My desires, how numberless!

To see what ought not to be seen.

 To hear what should not be heard,

 To utter what must not be spoken.

 To indulge in what should not be done,

 To tread the way that is best avoided!

Yet do I pride

That I know all that has to be known

 That I am unrivalled in my learning

Of scriptures and tongues and all the rest.


Even as the countless ‘eyes’ in the peacock’s train

 do not help it to see,

You are not known however much I know;

 You are not seen even by intense search;

 You did not answer my vain calls!

Helpless as I am,

Today I confess before thee Mother, my in competence.

Won’t you take me near out of grace?

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