A Monsoon Diary
23: This morning, I reread Poems from
the Sanskrit. Bittersweet, and wonderful. About Viyog, or
separation. About men longing for women, and then about women longing for
men, especially during the Rainy Season.
"At night, the rain came. And the thunder deep rolled in the distance. And he could not sleep, but tossed and turned with long and frequent sighs. And as he listened, tears came to his eyes... and thinking of his young wife left alone, he sobbed and wept aloud until the dawn."
Mirabai is a famous 16th century mystic. The lover in her most highly charged poems is really a synonym for God. But once again it's the monsoon that provides the excuse. Notice the references to the various animals of the Rainy Season - frogs, koels, peacocks - and the "low, black clouds." Or this poem by Mirabai:
you Krishna I simply cannot sleep.
I'm lonely. I just can't sleep.
The flames of love
are driving me wild.
Without the light of your love
My house is dark.
These lamps do not please me.
Without you here, frankly, my bed is uninviting.
I pass the nights awake.
Oh, when are you going to come back?
The frogs are croaking.
I can hear the peacock cry
And the koyl sing.
Low black clouds gather.
Lightning flashes. God, I'm scared!
eyes are full with tears.
Help me, Krishna!
My body's been bitten
By the snake of "absence",
There's nothing left for me!
one of you
Will go and find my Hari and bring him back to me?
Oh, my lord, when will you come
To meet your Mira?