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Amba hurried, to the feet of Salva, expecting matrimony

Instead of sastras chanting testimony he rained ignominy

Defeated disgraced am I, by the one who touched and carried you off spoiled

Return to him whose breath your cheek first felt, for my bloodline, shall not be soiled

Distraught, Amba returned to Hastinapura

Bhishma suggested she wife’s Vichitravirya

The king declined, when unblemished orchards beckoned

What need had he for a soiled fruit, he reckoned

As recourse, take me for your wife, beseeched Amba

I’m married to celibacy pleaded Bhishma

Chained in sorrow, her sweetness morphed and raged

Blaming Bhishma, for her life so disparaged


Lord Parasurama: Image credit @ Agnihotra – Healing Fire

Amba sought Parasurama, hater of the Kshatriya Race

The Brahmin gave relentless battle to the Grand Sire, to disgrace

Combat between the two finest then present, this was not

The peerless Kshatriyan prevailed, as ordained by the gods

Consumed with unbridled hatred, to the Himalayas retired Amba

Through rigorous austerities, she won the grace of mighty Lord Siva

The Lord Destroyer did grant her a boon

In her next life, she will be Bhishma’s doom

Unwilling to await Yaman, she plunged into a fiery pyre

As King Drupada’s daughter, her avatar did reappear

As the she-male Shikhandi, she would drive Arjun’s chariot against Bhishma

Who will not fight a woman; she knew that of the Old Charisma

In the ensuing battle, Bhishma would invite the cloak of arrows

Wrapping himself, thus, the Grand Sire ends his long probation of sorrows

Vasishtha’s curse paid in full for the milk from Nandini

Bhishma joins his Seven Brothers, the Vasus, and his Queen

So winds one thread in mankind’s tapestry of mortal destiny

That which wise men lament as human failings and ignominy

This is not the end; O People of the Faith, there are no restraints

For the Alpha and the Omega are figments born of constraints.

************ Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2014 ************