You are not the only one, dearest, to feel the bitterness of parting. As the time of separation approaches, the whole grove seems to share your anguish.
In sorrow for thy loss, the herd of deer
Forget to browse; the peacock on the lawn
Ceases its dance; the very trees around
Shed their pale leaves, like tears, upon the ground.
[S’]AKOONTALA. [Recollecting herself.
My father, let me, before I go, bid adieu to my pet jasmine, the Moonlight of the Grove. I love the plant almost as a sister.
Yes, yes, my child, I remember thy sisterly affection for the creeper. Here it is on the right.
[S’]AKOONTALA. [Approaching the jasmine.
My beloved jasmine! most brilliant of climbing plants, how sweet it is to see thee cling thus fondly to thy husband, the mango-tree; yet, prithee, turn thy twining arms for a moment in this direction to embrace thy sister; she is going far away, and may never see thee again.
Daughter, the cherished purpose of my
Has ever been to wed thee to a man
That should be worthy of thee; such a spouse
Hast thou thyself, by thine own merits, won.
To him thou goest, and about his neck
Soon shalt thou cling confidingly, as now
Thy favourite jasmine twines its loving arms
Around the sturdy mango. Leave thou it
To its protector—e’en as I consign
Thee to thy lord, and henceforth from my mind
Banish all anxious thought on thy behalf.
Proceed on thy journey, my child.
[S’]AKOONTALA. [To PRIYAMVADA and ANASUYA.
To you, my sweet companions, I leave it as a keepsake. Take charge of it when I am gone.
PRIYAMVADA AND ANASUYA. [Bursting into tears.
And to whose charge do you leave us, dearest? Who will care for us when you are gone?
For shame, Anasuya! dry your tears. Is this the way to cheer your friend at a time when she needs your support and consolation?
[All move on.
My father, see you there my pet deer, grazing close to the hermitage? She expects soon to fawn, and even now the weight of the little one she carries hinders her movements. Do not forget to send me word when she becomes a mother.
I will not forget it.
[S’]AKOONTALA. [Feeling herself drawn back.
What can this be, fastened to my dress?