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“But this happiness was all destroyed by the intrigues of Dasaratha's second wife, who was jealous of Rama, and determined that her son Bharat should be the future king.” Mrs. SPEIR.
High on the palace roof Kaikeyi's maid,
The white-robed nurse, with transport uncontrolled, All the glad story to the damsel told : “To-morrow's happy light will see,” she cried, “Prince Rama Regent by his father's side."
Down from the roof, high as Kailasa's' head,
Up, queen !" she cried, “ unclose thy heedless eyes ;
Has hither fled to warn thee and to save.
Are not my fortunes closely knit with thine ?
And thou, the scion of a royal race,
Sees not the cruel snares tbat hem thee in.
Kind flattering words he makes thine empty dower,
And, every rival thus removed from sight,
Ensure thy safety and prevent the crime.
Up rose Kaikeyi radiant with delight,
Like the calm moon upon the autumn night,
The handmaid's soul with grief and fury burned ; She cried in anger, as the gift she spurned : “What! on the sea of whelming ruin tost, Canst thou rejoice when all but hope is lost ? Heart-sick I am, yet smile to see thy joy When peril threatens and will soon destroy. If thou wert wise thou scarce wouldst hail, I ween, For king, the offspring of a rival queen. Soon wilt thou stand in menial habit drest, And move obedient to her high behest. Yea, thou wilt serve with us who serve thee now, And see thy child before his brother bow. Then Rama's wife will triumph, queen of all, And thy poor daughter be a helpless thrall.”
“The viriuous Rama,” thus the dame replied, “From virtue's path will never turn aside. Obedient, grateful, pure from stain, and true, As eldest born he only gains his due. His lords and brethren many a year will share, Blest in his rule, his kind paternal care : And when a hundred years have past away, My son, dear Bharat, will enjoy the sway. I love Prince Rama as mine own dear son ;
I see no fault to stain him, no not one.
Gentle and lowly, good and kind is he,
What though he rule, there is no cause of fear,
To him his br
en as his soul are dear :
And though in name his father's place he fill
Kaikeyi ceased : the impatient maiden sighed, And thus with tears of grief and spite replied : “Ah queen, what frenzy has assailed thy mind, And made thee thus to instant danger blind ? Too blind to mark the seas of grief and woe,