IN THE EARLY, PEARLY MORNING
- HE fields are full of Poppies, and the skies are very blue,
- By the Temple in the coppice, I wait, Beloved, for you.
- The level land is sunny, and the errant air is gay,
- With scent of rose and honey; will you come to me to-day?
- From carven walls above me, smile lovers; many a pair.
- "Oh, take this rose and love me!" she has twined it in her hair.
- He advances, she retreating, pursues and holds her fast,
- The sculptor left them meeting, in a close embrace at last.
- Through centuries together, in the carven stone they lie,
- In the glow of golden weather, and endless azure sky.
- Oh, that we, who have for pleasure so short and scant a stay,
- Should waste our summer leisure; will you come to me to-day?
- The Temple bells are ringing, for the marriage month has come.
- I hear the women singing, and the throbbing of the drum.
- And when the song is failing, or the drums a moment mute,
- The weirdly wistful wailing of the melancholy flute.
- Little Life has got to offer, and little man to lose,
- Since to-day Fate deigns to proffer, Oh wherefore, then, refuse
- To take this transient hour, in the dusky Temple gloom
- While the poppies are in flower, and the mangoe trees abloom.
- And if Fate remember later, and come to claim her due,
- What sorrow will be greater than the Joy I had with you?
- For to-day, lit by your laughter, between the crushing years,
- I will chance, in the hereafter, eternities of tears.
- TRANSLATED INTO ENGLISH BY LAURENCE HOPE (1865-1904)
MORE POEMS BY VALGOVIND
|"In the Early, Pearly Morning" is reprinted from India's Love Lyrics. Trans. Laurence Hope. New York: John Lane Co., 1906.