Tuesday, December 15, 2020





My husband is the same man who stole my virginity.
These are the same moonlit nights;
the same breeze floats down from the Vindhya mountains,
thick with the scent of flowering jasmine.
I too am the same woman. Yet I long with all my heart
for the thicket of reeds by the river
that once knew our wild delight.

Excerpt From
Erotic Poems from the Sanskrit translated by
R. Parthasarathy

ŚĪLĀBHAṬṬĀRIKĀ was a 9th-century Sanskrit poet. Her verses appear in most major Sanskrit anthologies, and her poetic skills have been praised by the medieval Sanskrit literary critics. 

The above short poem of Shilabhattarika is considered as one of her greatest poems written in the Sanskrit tradition. Indian scholar Supriya Banik Pal believes that the poem expresses the speaker's anxiety to be reunited with her husband. According to American author Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, the poetess, possibly a middle-aged woman, implies that the illicit, pre-marital love between her and her lover was richer than their love as a married couple ".[Ref Wiki]

Painting : Raja Ravi Varma, Lady in the Moon Light (1889)

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