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Radha's Perplexity by A.F. Khabardar

Radha’s Perplexity is really a very lovely poem penned down by A.F. Khabardar which he penned so long ago before the independence of India and the scenes are pastoral, idyllic and classical indeed, so golden and lyrical to hear and dream about and the mind tires not in listening or seeing the drama of love divine which is but a classical stuff of our ancient lore and folk traditions. The poem describes the ancient lore of India as well as its rich cultural traditions which the poet has reminding us of Krishnalila and Raaslila. Truly so, India cannot be India without Rama and Krishna and their lore.

Radha’s Perplexity is all about the nervousness, the doubt and dilemma which one passes through about love and love for the lover.  Only a lover’s heart can feel it. Only a lover can bear it to say. She does not know what Kahn has seen in her. What has he found in her that he so often looks at her? When she glances at her, she forgets the work allotted to and assigned with and the mood dwells it far, emotions take over and she takes time to grapple with. What is this passion for him? Why does the mind understand it not? His looks can steal the heart easily. She stands to see him depart with what to say and what not. Who is calling as Radhika, Radhika? Perhaps somebody else has called. She turns to the birds in the mango grove and the birds seem to be calling Radhika, Radhika. How is the illusion of love, the hallucination of? But he goes away with laughs and passes over. She goes to the village well to carry the water pots full of water.

When the dawn lifts the veil, he comes to slowly and stealthily to take her away and she feels gripped with the cheetah trail of imagery. When unable to lift the pots filled with water, he comes to lift and place them on the head with the sympathetic words of affection. How high is the distance to be lifted and to be placed over? She turns her face, but he looks into the face while lifting the pots. And he laughs and passes by. 

She takes to Gokul the sweetest curd, but he intercepts her on the midway just like the wayward spring and she feels it perturbed to cross over. He seems to asking many a thing, trying to know from. But she tries her best to break the spell and tries to move away with a gentle push even if she has to give and do it for. At that time the sun seems to be shining high into the skies. With a jerk she moves it ahead and tries to spy back on hearing the flute taking her name. But while doing so, the curds fall to the ground.

Radhika's Perplexity

I know not what Kahn has seen in me,
How often he looks at my face!
His eyes are quicken’d to steal my heart,
I stand like a statue to see him depart,
And glance at his charming grace;
I call to the birds in the mango grove,
And turn for their sweet reply. 
" Radhika ! Radhika ! here are the birds ! 
I hear there someone cry;
I turn again and he looks in my face
And laughs and passes by !
I carry my pots to the village-well.
When the dawn has lifted her veil;
 Slowly and slyly he comes behind
Like a chittah, and suddenly there I find
His shadow before me trail; 
I fill my water-pots on the well.
When stealthily he comes nigh, 
He lays them on my head uncall’d,
'' Oh Radhika ! 'tis too high!” 
I turn my face, but he looks in my eyes
And laughs and passes by!
I take to Gokul my sweetest curds,
When the herd is on the field; 
He blocks my way with a wayward spring,
And asks of me there many a thing,
But I do not care to yield;
I walk away with a gentle push,
As the sun is high in the sky,
I hear my name through some magical flute
And I turn behind to spy:
My curds fall down and he looks in my face
And laughs and passes by!


More by :  Bijay Kant Dubey

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