The Madness of Manini1
BY THE REV. NARAYAN WAMAN TILAK
Dear one, your touch has set me a-weeping,
And the tears stream down.
With these very tears did I nurture a little plant,
And the little plant grew and flowered.
Lovingly I held these flowers at my breast;
And alas! one day I crushed them:
Crushed them through my pride.
Sadly I plucked them–these withered faded ones, the ones
that I had crushed.
And gazed at the ruin.
Lo! I beheld the fires I myself had lit
Into which I had consigned my offering.
The ashes I smeared on me in despair
And went a-crying out into the
World: I was mine own enemy’.
Translated from MARATHI by
R. L. RAU.
1Manini, in a fit, sends her lover away. She is proud and sensitive and does not want to call him back again to her. And then come regrets, longings and the inevitable madness.