Today's Beautiful Gem: `Please tell us of His whereabouts' by the Telugu poet
Bammera Potana, translated by me.

The child's eyes fix upon the mother;
The lover's lips long for the mate's;
The earth looks up to the sky;
The devotee is ever in search of God!

The gopis are looking for that mischievous Lord of the Brindavan.
They enquire the animate and inanimate objects-- flowers, trees,
rivers and the elements. They enquire thus the jasmine creepers:
    "He has a dark skin;
He has lotus eyes;
He radiates compassion;
He has feathers of the peacock on his crown;
    He has a face that sparkles with smiles;
    He has robbed the souls of women--
    Is He, by any chance, hiding behind these bushes?
    Tell us quick, O jasmine flowers!"

They continue:
"aMgajunaina cUDa hRdayaMgamuDai karagiMcu vADu srI-
raMgat+ uraMbu vADu madhuraMbagu vENuravaMbu vADu mam-
maMgaju puvvu tUpulakun+ aggamu cEsi lavaMga luMga nA-
raMgamulAra! mI kaDaku rADu gadA! kRpan+ unna cUparE!"

"With his looks, he can melt the heart of even Eros;
He is wealthy wearing Lakshmi on his chest;
He produces melodious notes on his flute;
He has made us victims to the flower-arrows of the Love god;
O creepers of lavanga, lunga and nAranga!
Has He by any chance come to your shadows?
Please, tell us His of whereabouts."

Note: lavaMga=clove; luMga=mAdI tree; nAraMga=orange.

Om s'aantih: Peace! - J. K. Mohana Rao