He Teaches the Creepers How to Dance



The mirth of the sakhīs brought the Divine Couple out of Their ever-expanding ocean of ecstasy. Rādhā-Mādhava gazed at each other’s faces with widened eyes and stood motionless like figures drawn in a painting. As one cannot immediately detect milk within a white conchshell, it was almost impossible to see Rādhā’s fine blue cloth on Krishna’s dark body, or Krishna’s yellow cloth against the effulgent golden body of Rādhā.

Lalitā angrily criticized the rising sun for interrupting her drinking of the nectar of Rādhā-Krishna’s sweet pastimes:

“O Rādhe! Just see. Even though the sun was stricken with leprosy and lost his legs for disturbing romantic couples, he continues the heinous act. The sages have correctly said that it is very difficult for a person to give up His nature.”

Vṛṣabhānunandini nodded in approval of Lalitā’s riddle. Rādhā, Her eyes reddened with anger over the interruption of Her amorous affairs, glanced at the crimson morning sky and said in a sweet, gentle voice:

“Even though the sun lost his legs, he returns in a moment to repeat his sinful deed. If Brahmā had given him legs, there would be no night at all.”

Śyāma, inspired by the charm of early morning and elated by the ambrosial words of Rādhikā, forgot about returning home. He spoke to the queen of His heart:

“Look, My dearest! A mistress has turned red with jealousy on seeing Her lover return at dawn bearing signs of conjugal bliss. Similarly, the eastern sky reddens with envy upon seeing her husband, the sun, arrive at dawn with red marks all over his body from touching other women[1].

“Look! The lotus is speaking to the white lily: ‘O white lily, look! Even though your lover, the moon, the best of brāhmaṇas, is peaceful by nature and destroys the darkness of sins, by contacting Vāruṇī[2] he has fallen from his exalted position.’ The white lily has covered her face in shame within her wilted petals upon hearing the playful talk of the lotus, now joyful in the association of her lover, the sun.

“The black cuckoos watch the moon destroy the darkness and think,

‘Since we are black, perhaps the moon will also destroy us!’

In anxiety, they call out to the new moon, ‘kuhū, kuhū.’ The cuckoos think that when the moonless night comes, Rāhu will cover the moon and protect them.

“As a woman sighs in ecstasy when enjoying her lover, the forest, crazed with joy on meeting its lover the spring season, emits the same sound as the cooing of doves. O Śaśimukhi[3]! A restless bee, covered with pollen from playing in the lilies, now madly pursues his mate, who is just crawling out of the lotus in which she spent the night.

“The female heron, yearning to meet her lover at daybreak, blissfully kisses a red lotus, which has become doubly red in the rays of dawn. O Kalakaṇṭḥī[4]! Seeing Us, the swan named Kalasvana has left his mate, who is eager for pleasure, and come to the bank of the Yamunā spreading his wings in joy.

“Look, Padma-mukhi[5]! The goose named Tuṇḍikerī clutches in her beak the half-eaten lotus stalks given by her husband. While constantly gazing upon Your lotus face, she now comes with her mate, uttering soft, indistinct sounds. The cool breeze from the peaks of the Malaya hills carries the sweet aroma of lotuses as he gently plays over the waters of the Yamunā. He teaches the creepers how to dance, relieves everyone’s fatigue and dries the perspiration from the bodies of lovers[6].”

[1] The directions

[2] Western sky or wine

[3] Moon face

[4] Sweet-voiced

[5] Lotus-face

[6] Govinda-līlāmṛta 1.67-105



This is a section of the book “Vrindavana Lila”.

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