Collected Poems of Henry Derozio: Preface by Manu Samriti Chander; Edited by Amardeep Singh

Fakeer of Jungheera 1.3

   Jungheera's rocks are hoar and steep, 
And Ganges' wave is broad and deep. 

And round that island-rock the wave 
Obsequious comes its feet to lave— 
Those rocks, the stream's victorious foes, 
Frown darkly proud as on it flows; 
Regardless of their haughty frown 
The sacred wave goes wandering on; 
And fishers there their shallops guide 
Upon the rosy-bosomed tide! 
High on the hugest granite pile 
Of that grey barren craggy isle, 
A small rude hut unsheltered stands- 
Erected by no earthly hands; 
And never sinful foot might dare 
To find its way unbidden there. 
The holy man who makes his home 
That rock, beyond it ne'er will roam; 
The light of day may never shine 
Upon an aspect more divine; 
The Pilgrim moon may never see 
A heart with more of purity, 
Pure as her own unearthly beams, 
Or brightest angels' blissful dreams! 
His spirit's sacred rays are given 
To one perpetual thought of heaven; 
In prayer for all the sin that lies 
Beneath the soft and pitying skies. 
His life unruffled, like the stream, 
Flows brightly in devotion's beam. 
And never earthly eye has seen 
His hallowed form, his saintly mien; 
Some say its holy heavenly light 
Would be for mortal view too bright! 

As never eye hath dared to gaze 
On Surya's everlasting blaze. 
But others tell of deeds of death, 
Of blood-stained hands, and broken faith, 
Of outlaws leagued, of foemen slain, 
The hamlet burned, the plundered swain, 
The peasant forced his home to flee, 
The princely maiden's treachery, 
Her youthful lord's untimely fall—-  
And he, the demon—-cause of all! 


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