Your Majesty’s commands shall be obeyed.
KING. [To the CHAMBERLAIN.
And you, Vatayana, may go about your own affairs.
I will, Sire.
Now that you have rid yourself of these troublesome fellows, you can enjoy the delightful coolness of your pleasure-grounds without interruption.
Ah! my dear friend, there is an old adage:—’When affliction has a mind to enter, she will find a crevice somewhere;’ and it is verified in me.
Scarce is my soul delivered from the cloud
That darkened its remembrance of the past,
When lo! the heart-born deity of love
With yonder blossom of the mango barbs
His keenest shaft, and aims it at my breast.
Well, then, wait a moment; I will soon demolish Master Kama’s arrow with a cut of my cane.
[Raises his stick and strikes off the mango-blossom.
That will do. I see very well the god of love is not a match for a Brahman. And now, my dear friend, where shall I sit down, that I may enchant my sight by gazing on the twining plants, which seem to remind me of the graceful shape of my beloved?
Don’t you remember? you told your personal attendant, Chaturika, that you would pass the heat of the day in the jasmine-bower; and commanded her to bring the likeness of your queen [S’]akoontala, sketched with your own hand.
True. The sight of her picture will refresh my soul. Lead the way to the arbour.
This way, Sire.
[Both move on, followed by SANUMATI.
Here we are at the jasmine-bower. Look, it has a marble seat, and seems to bid us welcome with its offerings of delicious flowers. You have only to enter and sit down.
[Both enter and seat themselves.
I will lean against these young jasmines. I can easily, from behind them, glance at my friend’s picture, and will then hasten to inform her of her husband’s ardent affection.
[Stands leaning against the creepers.
Oh! my dear friend, how vividly all the circumstances of my union with [S’]akoontala present themselves to my recollection at this moment! But tell me now how it was that, between the time of my leaving her in the hermitage and my subsequent rejection of her, you never breathed her name to me? True, you were not by my side when I disowned her; but I had confided to you the story of my love, and you were acquainted with every particular. Did it pass out of your mind as it did out of mine?