Deccan Nursery Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 78 pages of information about Deccan Nursery Tales.
relatives wanted to burn the body, she forbade them and told them to go away.  For she said, “My fortune is still to come, whatever it may be.”  They all got round her and tried to persuade her that there was no use in her staying by the corpse, but she would not mind what they said.  At last they were quite tired out and went home, leaving her in the burning-ground.  When they had gone she took her husband’s corpse on to her lap.  Then she prayed to the god Shiva and said: 

       “My parents disown me.  O why was I born
        Both as orphan and widow to live all forlorn?”

As she prayed, she put the pulse which her mother had put into her lap grain by grain in the dead man’s mouth.  Then she sat there crying until midnight.  Now it happened that on that very night Shiva and Parwati were in their chariot driving through the air over that very place.  Parwati said suddenly to her husband, “I hear a woman crying, let us go and see what it is.”  The god Shiva drove his chariot down to earth.  He and Parwati got out and saw the Brahman’s youngest daughter crying.  They asked her what the reason was, and she told them.  Then Parwati pitied her and said, “Your aunt has acquired great merit by her piety and devotions.  You go to her and get her to give you all her merit and so you will bring your husband back to life.”  The god Shiva and Parwati then mounted on their chariot and disappeared.  Next morning the little widow left her husband’s body, went to her aunt’s house and begged her to give her all the merit which she had acquired, and told her the cause of the request.  The aunt was very good and gave her all her own merit.  The little widow then went back to the burning-ground and with its aid brought her husband back to life.  But this time he was no longer a beggar-man black with leprosy and with feet and hands that had rotted away.  He was a beautiful young man with well-shaped feet and a beautiful fair skin, and the little widow took her husband back to her father’s house.  “Papa, Papa,” she said, “you turned me out, but the gods have brought me back, and good fortune came to me without your bringing it.”  The father was too frightened of Parwati to say anything, so he held his peace.  And the little girl and her husband, the beggar-man, lived happily ever afterwards.

CHAPTER XI

Parwati and the Brahman

Once upon a time there was a town called Atpat.  In it there lived a poor Brahman.  When the month of Bhadrapad came round, every household bought little images of Parwati, and the women began to walk about the streets and sound gongs.  When the poor Brahman’s children saw this they went home and said to their mother, “Mummy, Mummy, please buy us little images of Parwati like the other little boys and girls have.”  But their mother said, “What is the use of my buying images of Parwati?  If I do we shall have to make offerings, and there is

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Deccan Nursery Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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