Sakoontala or the Lost Ring eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 179 pages of information about Sakoontala or the Lost Ring.


Lady, I will tell you the exact state of the case,

  No skill in acting can I deem complete,
  Till from the wise the actor gain applause;
  Know that the heart e’en of the truly skilful,
  Shrinks from too boastful confidence in self.

ACTRESS. [Modestly.]

You judge correctly And now, what are your commands?


What can you do better than engage the attention of the audience by some captivating melody?


Which among the seasons shall I select as the subject of my song?


You surely ought to give the preference to the present Summer season[5] that has but recently commenced, a season so rich in enjoyment.  For now

  Unceasing are the charms of halcyon days,
  When the cool bath exhilarates the frame;
  When sylvan gales are laden with the scent
  Of fragrant Patalas[6]; when soothing sleep
  Creeps softly on beneath the deepening shade;
  And when, at last, the dulcet calm of eve
  Entrancing steals o’er every yielding sense.


I will:—­


  Fond maids, the chosen of their hearts to please,
  Entwine their ears with sweet [S’]irisha flowers[7],
  Whose fragrant lips attract the kiss of bees
  That softly murmur through the summer hours.


Charmingly sung!  The audience are motionless as statues, their souls riveted by the enchanting strain.  What subject shall we select for representation, that we may ensure a continuance of their favour?


Why not the same, Sir, announced by you at first?  Let the drama called ‘[S’]akoontala; or, the Lost Ring,’ be the subject of our dramatic performance.


Rightly reminded!  For the moment I had forgotten it.

  Your song’s transporting melody decoyed
  My thoughts, and rapt with ecstasy my soul;
  As now the bounding antelope allures
  The King Dushyanta[8] on the chase intent.



SCENE-A Forest.

Enter King DUSHYANTA, armed with a bow and arrow, in a chariot, chasing an antelope, attended by his CHARIOTEER.


[Looking at the deer, and then at the KING.

Great Prince,

  When on the antelope I bend my gaze,
  And on your Majesty, whose mighty bow
  Has its string firmly braced; before my eyes
  The god that wields the trident[9] seems revealed. 
  Chasing the deer that flies from him in vain.


Charioteer, this fleet antelope has drawn us far from my attendants.  See! there he runs: 

Aye and anon his graceful neck he bends
To cast a glance at the pursuing car;
And dreading now the swift-descending shaft,
Contracts into itself his slender frame;
About his path, in scattered fragments strewn,
The half-chewed grass falls from his panting mouth;
See! in his airy bounds he seems to fly,
And leaves no trace upon th’ elastic turf.

Project Gutenberg
Sakoontala or the Lost Ring from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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