Rama laments for Seetha’s separation. He starts searching for her and goes on asking every plant, tree and animal, in a kind of frenzied attitude.
भृशम् आव्रजमानस्य तस्य अधो वाम लोचनम् |
प्रास्फुरत् च अस्खलत् रामो वेपथुः च अस्य जायते || ३-६०-१
praasphurat ca askhalat raamo vepathuH ca asya jaayate || 3-60-1
While Rama is coming towards hermitage his lower eyelid frequently fluttered, his gait faltered, and he missed his footing. [3-60-1] .
उपालक्ष्य निमित्तानि सो अशुभानि मुहुर् मुहुः |
अपि क्षेमम् तु सीताया इति वै व्याजहार ह || ३-६०-२
api kShemam tu siitaayaa iti vai vyaajahaara ha || 3-60-2
On closely watching those inauspicious forebodings Rama indeed uttered oftentimes reflexly thus as, ‘would she be safe, in fact!’ [3-60-2] .
त्वरमाणो जगाम अथ सीता दर्शन लालसः |
शून्यम् आवसथम् दृष्ट्वा बभूव उद्विग्न मानसः || ३-६०-३
shuunyam aavasatham dR^iShTvaa babhuuva udvigna maanasaH || 3-60-3
He quickened himself and went with an ardency to see Seetha, and then on seeing an empty home his heart is distraught. [3-60-3] .
उद् भ्रमन् इव वेगेन विक्षिपन् रघु नन्दनः |
तत्र तत्र उटज स्थानम् अभिवीक्ष्य समंततः || ३-६०-४
ददर्श पर्ण शालाम् च सीतया रहिताम् तदा |
श्रिया विरहिताम् ध्वस्ताम् हेमन्ते पद्मिनीम् इव || ३-६०-५
tatra tatra uTaja sthaanam abhiviikShya sama.ntataH || 3-60-4
dadarsha parNa shaalaam ca siitayaa rahitaam tadaa |
shriyaa virahitaam dhvastaam hemante padminiim iva || 3-60-5
Raghava looked like a flying-flutterer as his speed jostled his arms and gait flutteringly, and on closely probing there and there, and all-over the places of that cottage, then he saw the lustreless house of straw devoid of Seetha, alike a befogged wintry lotus-lake without lustre. [3-60-4, 5] .
रुदन्तम् इव वृक्षैः च ग्लान पुष्प मृग द्विजम् |
श्रिया विहीनम् विध्वस्तम् संत्यक्त वन दैवतैः || ३-६०-६
विप्रकीर्ण अजिन कुशम् विप्रविद्ध बृसी कटम् |
दृष्ट्वा शून्य उटज स्थानम् विललाप पुनः पुनः || ३-६०-७
shriyaa vihiinam vidhvastam sa.ntyakta vana daivataiH || 3-60-6
viprakiirNa ajina kusham vipraviddha bR^isii kaTam |
dR^iShTvaa shuunya uTaja sthaanam vilalaapa punaH punaH || 3-60-7
The trees of that woodland are seemingly weeping, as their flowers are witheringly weakening and their birds are weepingly warbling, and the animals are whingeingly weeping, and that woodland is charmless and utterly shattered, since its georgic deities have completely abandoned it. Rather utterly bestrewn are the deerskins and sacred grass blades, rather utterly battered are the tender-grass-seats and other mats in the compound of cottage, and he who ardently wanted to see Seetha, such a Rama, on seeing such an emptied locale and cottage, wept over, over and again. [3-60-6, 7]
By this bestrewn, battered, or shattered state of articles, it is evident that Seetha struggled a lot to get release from the clutches of Ravana, and in their tussle articles are in shambles. Hence, Ravana did not carry Seetha on a clod of earth as said in Adhyaatma Ramayana and other texts. Valmiki’s Seetha is an out and out human, as of now.
हृता मृता वा नष्टा वा भक्षिता वा भविष्यति |
निलीना अपि अथवा भीरुः अथवा वनम् आश्रिता || ३-६०-८
niliinaa api athavaa bhiiruH athavaa vanam aashritaa || 3-60-8
“That bashful Seetha might be stolen by the grudging demons, or slain by the very same grisly demons, or savoured by some gruesome beasts, or else she strayed in this gauntly forest, and even she might have playfully shrouded herself in the grimly forest, or else she must be sheltering herself in this forest which will be gruelling to locate. [3-60-8] .
गता विचेतुम् पुष्पाणि फलानि अपि च वा पुनः |
अथवा पद्मिनीम् याता जल अर्थम् वा नदीम् गता || ३-६०-९
athavaa padminiim yaataa jala artham vaa nadiim gataa || 3-60-9
“Or else, she might have again gone to pick the flowers or fruits, or again gone to lotus-lake, or gone to the river for water.” Thinking thus, Rama started his search for Seetha. [3-60-9] .
यत्नात् मृगयमाणः तु न आससाद वने प्रियाम् |
शोक रक्त ईक्षणः श्रीमान् उन्मत्त इव लक्ष्यते || ३-६०-१०
shoka rakta iikShaNaH shriimaan unmatta iva lakShyate || 3-60-10
Though he searched effortfully for his dear Seetha he did not get her, and as his anguish is reddening his eyes the appearance of that glorious one seems to be that of a madman. [3-60-10]
The word iva ‘as though, seems to be, alike…’ has some importance from the viewpoint of commentators, and some discussion is given in endnote on its usage. Because he is ‘like’ a madman, the translation shall also be ‘like’ a mad-translation, as long as he talks ‘like’ a madman.
वृक्षात् वृक्षम् प्रधावन् स गिरीम् च अपि नदी नदम् |
बभ्राम विलपन् रामः शोक पंक अर्णव प्लुतः || ३-६०-११
babhraama vilapan raamaH shoka pa.nka arNava plutaH || 3-60-11
Rama ran speedily from tree to shrub, from hill to hillock, from river to rivulet, and revolving around them he wailed for Seetha, as he is inundated in a sludgy ocean of woes. [3-60-11]
Whether Rama ‘really wept’ over Seetha’s absence or it the ‘playacting’ of god – is a much-debated topic. As a hero of the epic, it is ‘real’ weeping and it is necessary to arouse pathos, but should he be god or god incarnate, is ‘weeping’ manifest in the qualities of Omniscient – is the dilemma. Some points are presented in the endnote.
अस्ति कच्चित् त्वया दृष्टा सा कदम्ब प्रिया प्रिया |
कदम्ब यदि जानीषे शंस सीताम् शुभ आननाम् || ३-६०-१२
kadamba yadi jaaniiShe shaMsa siitaam shubha aananaam || 3-60-12
“Oh, Kadamba tree, seest thou someone a lady who is lover of Kadamba flowers, one with a lovable face and a love of mine, thou tellest me if thou knowest. [3-60-12] .
स्निग्ध पल्लव संकाशाम् पीत कौशेय वासिनीम् |
शंसस्व यदि सा दृष्टा बिल्व बिल्व उपम स्तनी || ३-६०-१३
shaMsasva yadi saa dR^iShTaa bilva bilva upama stanii || 3-60-13
“Oh, Bilva tree, if thou seest someone who is drest in yellowy-ochry silks, whose skin likens to the silkiness of thine leaflets, breasts to thine rotund and silky Bilva fruits, thou tellest me… [3-60-13] .
अथवा अर्जुन शंस त्वम् प्रियाम् ताम् अर्जुन प्रियाम् |
जनकस्य सुता तन्वी यदि जीवति वा न वा || ३-६०-१४
janakasya sutaa tanvii yadi jiivati vaa na vaa || 3-60-14
“Otherwise, thou Arjuna tree, if thou knowest her who is a lover of thine Arjuna flowers and the ladylove of mine, thou telleth whether that slender-waisted daughter of Janaka liveth or otherwise… [3-60-14].
ककुभः ककुभ ऊरुम् ताम् व्यक्तम् जानाति मैथिलीम् |
लता पल्लव पुष्प आढ्यो भाति हि एष वनस्पतिः || ३-६०-१५
lataa pallava puShpa aaDhyo bhaati hi eSha vanaspatiH || 3-60-15
“As to how this Kakubha tree shineth laden with creepy-creepers, foliole-foliage and flowery-flowers, this tree knowest Maithili whose thighs can be likened to the smoothish trunk of this very Kakubha tree… [3-60-15].
भ्रमरैर् उपगीतः च यथा द्रुम वरो हि असि |
एष व्यक्तम् विजानाति तिलकः तिलक प्रियाम् || ३-६०-१६
eSha vyaktam vijaanaati tilakaH tilaka priyaam || 3-60-16
“As to how this best tree among all trees heareth the chorus of honeybees that singest around it, thereby this Tilaka tree clearly knowest Maithili, a lover of Tilaka trees, as this shouldst have heard her. [3-60-16].
अशोक शोक अपनुद शोक उपहत चेतनम् |
त्वन् नामानम् कुरु क्षिप्रम् प्रिया संदर्शनेन माम् || ३-६०-१७
tvan naamaanam kuru kShipram priyaa sa.ndar.hshanena maam || 3-60-17
“Oh, Ashoka tree, an alleviator of agony, that is thine name lingually… but practically and readily name me after thine, by showing my ladylove, as my agony has marred my empathy… [3-60-17] .
यदि ताल त्वया दृष्टा पक्व ताल फल स्तनी |
कथयस्व वरारोहाम् कारुण्यम् यदि ते मयि || ३-६०-१८
kathayasva varaarohaam kaaruNyam yadi te mayi || 3-60-18
“Oh, Palm tree, if thou seest that lady breasted alike ripened-palm fruits of thine, and if thine mercy is mine, thou telleth of that shapely lady Seetha… [3-60-18] .
यदि दृष्टा त्वया सीता जम्बो जांबूनद सम प्रभा |
प्रियाम् यदि विजानासि निःशंक कथयस्व मे || ३-६०-१९
priyaam yadi vijaanaasi niHsha.nka kathayasva me || 3-60-19
“Oh, Rose-apple tree, if thou seest Seetha and thee knowest my ladylove with golden glitter, thou telleth me without hesitation…
“Oh, Rose-apple tree, if thou seest Seetha and thou knowest my ladylove whose complexion is smoothish like thine Rose-apples, thou telleth me unhesitatingly… [3-60-19] .
अहो त्वम् कर्णिकार अद्य पुष्पितः शोभसे भृशम् |
कर्णिकार प्रियाम् साध्वीम् शंस दृष्टा यदि प्रिया || ३-६०-२०
karNikaara priyaam saadhviim shaMsa dR^iShTaa yadi priyaa || 3-60-20
“Aha! Karnikaara tree, now thou art in full bloom and blooming magnificently, if thou seest that lover of Karnikaara-flowers and an immaculate ladylove of mine, thou telleth me… [3-60-20]
Annex: ‘you all might have seen when your friend was imperilled and you might have complained, or cried out with the rustle of your leaves or gestured with the swings of your branches, as humans would do with their voice and hands… and the birds and bees nestled on you also might have chorused, sadly… but those birds and bees are unable to communicate what has happened… you trees, though you may not have rushed to rescue her, as you are pegged on ground, you indicate to me, at least with your branchy gestures, what exactly has happened….
चूत नीप महा सालान् पनसान् कुरवान् धवान् |
दाडिमान् अपि तान् गत्वा दृष्ट्वा रामो महायशाः || ३-६०-२१
बकुलान् अथ पुन्नागान् च चंदनान्केतकान् तथा |
पृच्छन् रामो वने भ्रान्त उन्मत्त इव लक्ष्यते || ३-६०-२२
daaDimaan api taan gatvaa dR^iShTvaa raamo mahaayashaaH || 3-60-21
bakulaan atha punnaagaan ca ca.ndanaanketakaan tathaa |
pR^icchhan raamo vane bhraanta unmatta iva lakshyate || 3-60-22
Rama has gone on asking trees like mango, niipa, massive saala, jack-fruit, kuruva, dhava, and even around daaDima, bakula, punnaaga, sandalwood, ketaka trees, and when he is running around them that highly glorious Rama appeared like a madman. [3-60-21, 22] .
अथवा मृग शाब अक्षीम् मृग जानासि मैथिलीम् |
मृग विप्रेक्षणी कांता मृगीभिः सहिता भवेत् || ३-६०-२३
mR^iga viprekShaNii kaa.ntaa mR^igiibhiH sahitaa bhavet || 3-60-23
“Or else, oh, deer, dost thou know what bechanced to that fawn-eyed Maithili, one with quick-looks like thee deer? Or else, hast she herded herself into the herd of she-deer of yours… [3-60-23]
Annex: ‘poor trees… they cannot air their expression, hence Maithili is unsaid by them… but you deer, you can voice and gesticulate, then voice it out or gesticulate, since that Maithili is an all time playmate of you deer… and you are an expert in escaping, and you might have escaped when Maithili was in danger, does not matter, it is your nature, now tell me what exactly has happened…’ [but, then that deer ran in a particular way, but Rama is now unable to decipher it… and concludes,] ‘now also you are escaping expertly… leave it at that…’ .
गज सा गज नासोरुः यदि दृष्टा त्वया भवेत् |
ताम् मन्ये विदिताम् तुभ्यम् आख्याहि वर वारण || ३-६०-२४
taam manye viditaam tubhyam aakhyaahi vara vaaraNa || 3-60-24
“Oh, elephant, thou mightst beheld her whose thighs likens to your trunk at that problematic hour, thus methinks, and that Maithili is familiar to thee, and oh, best elephant, if thou beholdest her, thou tallest me… [3-60-24]
Annex: ‘though you are a pachyderm you are keen-eyed and you can find out even a thorn in the weed, also you are around this place for a long time, thus well acquainted with all of us… hence I deem that something must have happened and somehow you might have seen… though you could not prevent it with your massive head, trunk or legs, but tell me what exactly has happened….
शार्दूल यदि सा दृष्टा प्रिया चंद्र निभ आनना |
मैथिली मम विस्रब्धम् कथयस्व न ते भयम् || ३-६०-२५
maithilii mama visrabdham kathayasva na te bhayam || 3-60-25
“Fear not, oh, tiger, hast thou seen Maithili, the moonfaced ladylove of mine, if thou hast seen speak in good faith… [3-60-25]
Annex: ‘I know that you are a master prowler and a brave one, these deer and elephants are somehow fearing to tell me, but you tell me because you’re a brave one… did you not prowl the prowler of Maithili… I also know that equal is the fear when one sees a tiger or when a tiger sees one… now you need not lift up your fore-paw and step back on seeing me… as I cause no harm now… but tell me, whether you ran after that one who caused some harm to Seetha or not, as Seetha never harmed you, when you were on the prowl hereabouts…’ But that tiger retraced its steps, because Rama is an archer with a bow and arrows, without telling him that without exception all the animals vainly ran after Ravana trying to rescue Seetha. Such as he is, an uninformed one, he starts a delirious soliloquy in imagery.
किम् धावसि प्रिये नूनम् दृष्टा असि कमल ईक्षणे |
वृक्षेण आच्चाद्य च आत्मानम् किम् माम् न प्रतिभाषसे || ३-६०-२६
vR^ikSheNa aacchaadya ca aatmaanam kim maam na pratibhaaShase || 3-60-26
“Oh lotus-eyed lady, in fact I have seen you my dear, then why this running away and concealing yourself under trees, why do not you reply me… [3-60-26] .
तिष्ठ तिष्ठ वरारोहे न ते अस्ति करुणा मयि |
न अत्यर्थम् हास्य शीला असि किम् अर्थम् माम् उपेक्षसे || ३-६०-२७
na atyartham haasya shiilaa asi kim artham maam upekShase || 3-60-27
“Stay…stay… oh, best lady, don’t you have mercy on me? You are not unacceptably tease-humoured! What for you ignore me? [3-60-27] .
पीत कौशेयकेन असि सूचिता वर वर्णिनि |
धावन्ति अपि मया दृष्टा तिष्ठ यदि अस्ति सौहृदम् || ३-६०-२८
dhaavanti api mayaa dR^iShTaa tiShTha yadi asti sauhR^idam || 3-60-28
“Oh, beautifully complexioned lady, even if you are running away your yellowy silk-sari betokens you, stay, if you have goodwill for me… [3-60-28] .
न एव सा नूनम् अथवा हिंसिता चारु हासिनी |
कृच्छ्रम् प्राप्तम् न माम् नूनम् यथा उपेक्षितुम् अर्हति || ३-६०-२९
kR^icchhram praaptam na maam nuunam yathaa upekShitum ar.hhati || 3-60-29
“Otherwise, she whom I have just seen me may not be Seetha, why because, it is unapt of her to avoid me who attained this wretched state, hence Seetha with cheery smiles is certainly murdered… [3-60-29] .
व्यक्तम् सा भक्षिता बाला राक्षसैः पिशित अशनैः |
विभज्य अंगानि सर्वाणि मया विरहिता प्रिया || ३-६०-३०
vibhajya a.ngaani sar.hvaaNi mayaa virahitaa priyaa || 3-60-30
“Obviously the raw-flesh gorgers must have gorged that youngish lady on diving all her limbs in my absence from my dear one… [3-60-30] .
नूनम् तत् शुभ दंत ओष्ठम् सुनासम् शुभ कुण्डलम् |
पूर्ण चंद्र निभम् ग्रस्तम् मुखम् निष्प्रभताम् गतम् || ३-६०-३१
puurNa ca.ndra nibham grastam mukham niSh.hprabhataam gatam || 3-60-31
“Her face which is similar to a full-moon with pretty teeth, prettier lips, prettily nose and with prettyish earrings, might have obtained a blanched look when being devoured… [3-60-31] .
सा हि चंपक वर्ण आभा ग्रीवा ग्रैवेयक उचिता |
कोमला विलपन्त्याः तु कान्ताया भक्षिता शुभा || ३-६०-३२
komalaa vilapantyaaH tu kaantaayaa bhakShitaa shubhaa || 3-60-32
“But that exquisite and beautiful neck of that lady which shines forth in the colour of Campaka flower, befitting for any neck ornament, indeed it might be glutted down while she is bewailing… [3-60-32] .
नूनम् विक्षिप्यमाणौ तौ बाहू पल्लव कोमलौ |
भक्षितौ वेपमान अग्रौ स हस्त आभरण अंगदौ || ३-६०-३३
bhakShitau vepamaana agrau sa hasta aabharaNa a.ngadau || 3-60-33
“Her two arms which are delicate like tender leaves, ornamented with bangles and bicep-lets might have been definitely nibbled while they are wriggling with quivering fingers… [3-60-33] .
मया विरहिता बाला रक्षसाम् भक्षणाय वै |
सार्थेन इव परित्यक्ता भक्षिता बहु बांधवा || ३-६०-३४
saarthena iva parityaktaa bhakShitaa bahu baa.ndhavaa || 3-60-34
“This is as though I have forsaken this youngish Seetha really as a feast for the demons in my absence, and though Seetha has many relatives she has become as worse as a lonesome woman who is completely forsaken by her caravan who is lonesomely ready for the feast of highwaymen, and demons have feasted on her. [3-60-34] .
हा लक्ष्मण महाबाहो पश्यसे त्वम् प्रियाम् क्वचित् |
हा प्रिये क्व गता भद्रे हा सीते इति पुनः पुनः || ३-६०-३५
haa priye kva gataa bhadre haa siite iti punaH punaH || 3-60-35
“Ha, Lakshmana… oh, dextrous one… have you seen my ladylove anywhere… ha, dear, where have you gone… oh, auspicious lady… ha, Seetha…” thus Rama lamented again and again in his search. [3-60-35] .
इति एवम् विलपन् रामः परिधावन् वनात् वनम् |
क्वचित् उद् भ्रमते वेगात् क्वचित् विभ्रमते बलात् || ३-६०-३६
क्वचित् मत्त इव आभाति कांता अन्वेषण तत्परः |
kvacit ud bhramate vegaat kvacit vibhramate balaat || 3-60-36
kvacit matta iva aabhaati kaa.ntaa anveShaNa tatparaH |
On bewailing in this way and on overly rushing from wood to wood, somewhere Rama has become highly delusional by the forcefulness of delusion and spots forest stuff as Seetha, though none of them have any resemblance to Seetha, and somewhere else, marking creepers, plants or slender shrubs and suchlike delicacies as Seetha he has become really alluded by the powerfulness of allusion, and elsewhere, he is not discriminating paths or pathless routes for his trekking as an impassioned one in the search of his ladylove, and thus he is nitid like a madman. [3-60-36, 37a] .
स वनानि नदीः शैलान् गिरि प्रस्रवणानि च |
काननानि च वेगेन भ्रमति अपरिसंस्थितः || ३-६०-३७
kaananaani ca vegena bhramati aparisaMsthitaH || 3-60-37
Rama is on the rove around woods, rivers, hills, mountain-rapids and thicketed forests, speedily and restlessly. [3-60-37b,c] .
तदा स गत्वा विपुलम् महत् वनम्
परीत्य सर्वम् तु अथ मैथिलीम् प्रति |
अनिष्ठित आशः स चकार मार्गणे
पुनः प्रियायाः परमम् परिश्रमम् || ३-६०-३८
pariitya sarvam tu atha maithiliim prati |
aniShThita aashaH sa cakaara maargaNe
punaH priyaayaaH paramam parishramam || 3-60-38
On going round the vast of great forest in that way and on searching for Maithili, his hope became intangible, but again he undertook the search for his ladylove, over-strenuously. [3-60-38] .