Sunday, 28 October 2018

The Worshipper Complains of the Inequality of Lots - Rāmprasād Sen

Let us have a word or two about the problem of suffering
Let us talk about suffering, Tārā, let me express my mind

Some say that you are humble and full of kindness

Yes, Mother, to some you have given wealth, horses, elephants, charioteers, conquest
And the lot of others is field labour, with rice and vegetables

Some live in palaces, as I myself would like to do
O Mother, are these fortunate folk your grandfathers, and I no relation at all ?

Some wear shawls and comfortable wrappers1, they have sugar and curds as well as rice

Some ride in pālkis2, while I have the privilege of carrying them.

Mother, through what grain land of yours have I driven my plough?3

Prasād says if I forget you, I endure the burden of grief that burns
Mother, my desire is to become the dust of those Feet that banish fear

Rāmprasād Sen (Sadhak Rāmprasād Sen) (1718 - 1775) India
Translated by Edward J. Thompson and Arthur Marshman Spencer
Source: Bengali Religious Lyrics, Śākta, selected and translated by Edward J. Thompson and Arthur Marshman Spencer, Association Press, 1923

  1. comfortable wrappers (a type of shawl) were a sign of luxury
  2. pālkis - palanquins
  3. this would be a strong insult if it were done

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