The Rig Veda/Mandala 10/Hymn 18

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The Rig Veda
Mandala 10, Hymn 18
Translated by Ralph T.H. Griffith
1. Go hence, O Death, pursue thy special pathway apart from that which Gods are wont to travel.
     To thee I say it who hast eyes and hearest: Touch not our offspring, injure not our heroes.
2. As ye have come effacing Mrtyu's footstep, to further times prolonging your existence,
     May ye be rich in children and possessions. cleansed, purified, and meet for sacrificing.
3. Divided from the dead are these, the living: now be our calling on the Gods successful.
     We have gone forth for dancing and for laughter, tofurther times prolonging our existence.
4. Here I erect this rampart for the living; let none of these, none other, reach this limit.
     May they survive a hundred lengthened autumns, and may they bury Death beneath this mountain.
5. As the days follow days in close succession, as with the seasons duly come the seasons,
     As each successor fails not his foregoer, so form the lives of these, O great Ordainer.
6. Live your full lives ap! find old age delightful, all of you striving one behind the other.
     May Tvastar, maker of fair things, be gracious and lengthen out the days of your existence.
7. Let these unwidowed dames with noble husbands adorn themselves with fragrant balm and unguent.
     Decked with fair jewels, tearless, free from sorrow, first let the dames go up to where he lieth.
8. Rise, come unto the world of life, O woman: come, he is lifeless by whose side thou liest.
     Wifehood with this thy husband was thy portion, who took thy hand and wooed thee as a lover.
9. From his dead hand I take the bow be carried, that it may be our power and might and glory.
     There art thou, there; and here with noble heroes may we o'ercome all hosts that fight against us.
10. Betake thee to the Iap of Earth the Mother, of Earth far-spreading, very kind and gracious.
     Young Dame, wool-soft unto the guerdongiver, may she preserve tbee from Destruction's bosom.
11. Heave thyself, Earth, nor press thee downward heavily: afford him easy access, gently tending him.
     Cover him, as a mother wraps her skirt about her child, O Earth.
12. Now let the heaving earth be free from motion: yea,- let a thousand clods remain above him.
     Be they to him a home distilling fatness, here let them ever be his place of refuge.
13. I stay the earth from thee, while over thee I place this piece of earth. May I be free from injury.
     Here let the Fathers keep this pillar firm for thee, and there let Yama make thee an abiding-place.
14. Even as an arrow's feathers, they have set me on a fitting day.
     The fit word have I caught and held as 'twere a courser with the rein.