Hi Friends,

Even as I launch this today ( my 80th Birthday ), I realize that there is yet so much to say and do.

There is just no time to look back, no time to wonder,"Will anyone read these pages?"

With regards,
Hemen Parekh
27 June 2013

Monday, 10 August 1970


In the dark night
The storm was raging ;
And so did one
In the depths of Vasavdatta’s
heart .

For , at the yonder end of
The bridge ,
-     Which like her heaving
Swayed over Sipra’s
Turbulent waters ;
Her lover stood in wait ,
Singing a tune
On his melodious flute ,
That made the restless night
Still more .

Hasten Vasavdatta ,
The time was running short ;
And with gentle steps
Thru the courtyard
And the guard less gates
She made her way –
Though her hair hung loose
And the cheeks were smeared
With kajal .

Oh , such a terrible night !

She shivered in the
Clatter of rain –
Plodding her way
Through the flooded streets ,
She came to the outskirt
Of town ;

“ I am coming to thee ,
My love “ , cried she ,
“ Play no more the tune
That drives me wild “ .

But lo ! what strikes her feet ?
Holding her breath ,
In lightning’s wake,
Saw Vasavdatta ,
A smiling face !

“ Who you ? “, spoke she ,
“ In this dreadful night
And with what delight ,
Are lying on the ground ? “

Slipped words
From the stranger’s tongue ,
“ I am Upagupta
The Sadhu ,
Who has made a shelter ,
Of star-studded sky ,
And usually finds
A bed of grass
To rest a dreamless night “ .

“ Forgive me , O Sadhu ,
For touching thee with
My feet “ ,
Begged she ,
“ And for the night ,
You my guest be “ .

“ Not tonight
Vasavdatta .
He who waits for you ,
Shall have his time ,
But I promise you
To come sometime ,
Farewell till then “ .

And the time fled swift ;

For one full moon night ,
As a gentle breeze blew
On Sipra’s waters ,
Walked Upagupta
Across the bridge .

And on the same spot ,
Where they first met ,
Found he Vasavdatta ,
Ailing to death .

Whispered he to her ,
“ Look Vasavdatta ,
I have kept my promise “ .

“ Touch me not
My Lord ,
Touch not this leper ;
My sins must take their toll ,
The disease is deadly
And my hour is come “ .

“ And so has mine “ ,
The Sadhu spoke ,
“ I have promised you
Vasavdatta ,
And so shall this be
Our night  “ .

“ The stars are twinkling
The bells are ringing
The fragrance floats
On the westerly wind.
The heaven is whispering
To the earth below ,

 As I play the flute
You join me with the song ,
This is our night.

Our last night “ .


10  Aug  1970


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