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  • Glory to Saktinath, upon whose steps,
  • The mighty goddesses attend, whom seek
  • Successfully alone the firm of thought.
  • He crowns the lofty aims of those who know
  • And hold his form, as the pervading spirit,
  • That, one with their own essence, makes his seat
  • The heart, the lotus center of the sphere
  • Sixfold by ten nerves circled. Such am I.
  • Freed from all perishable bonds, I view
  • The eternal soul embodied as the God.
  • Forced by my spells to tread the mystic labyrinth,
  • And rise in splendor throned upon my heart.
  • Hence through the many channeled veins I draw
  • The grosser elements of this mortal body,
  • And sour unwearied through the air, dividing
  • The water-shedding clouds. Upon my flight,
  • Horrific honors wait; —the hollow skulls,
  • That low descending from my neck depend,
  • Emit fierce music as they clash together,
  • Or strike the trembling plates that gird my loins!
  • — from the “Malatimadhava” by Bhavabhuti (trans. H. H. Wilson).

Bhavabhuti (fl. 8th Century) was an Indian scholar and poet whose Sanskrit poems and plays are often compared to what many consider the greatest Sanskrit poet Kalidasa (fl. 4th Century). A court poet, Bhavabhuti integrated his experiences into his poetic works such as “Malatimadhava,” which tells the story of star-crossed lovers Malati and Madhava, who, after passing through various trials, meet a happy end.

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