The White Rose

The shepherd stood on the field, frail,
He knew not what to do when and why,
As the wrathful sun did steep down,
The confused chap followed his humble sheep.
Then one man neared and asked his name,
He gasped to answer the simple query,
The beads of sweat was vivid on him,
And he shone like a fidgety rivulet.
The hapless boy ambled to the shade;
Peace and comfort the tree provided;
He reclined beneath her graceful limbs;
For a bit he enjoyed a calm in his heart.
Drowsed he in no time, the cattle aside,
Closed were his eyelids, the hair tousled,
With the air that blew across the field,
And he slept in a dreamy mood of rapture.
The air blew cold, the leaves shook fast,
A blithe bird perched a bough so high,
And to the sweetest tune she sang her song,
That also failed to awaken the boy.

In his dream the fairies came
From unknown lands of brightest glee.
On their wings they glided up and down,
With almost a white aura around.
Helter-skelter all the while
Flew they in merry mood and mind,
And a nymphet whom this boy liked most,
Stood in raptures down the clouds.
Perhaps she murmured to the breeze
That snuggled her with a soft, soft kiss,
And thus was envied by the boy,
Who beshrewed the wind with manly voice;
Silent yet harsh his throat did trill,
“O nymph, not know’st how didst thou bless
This zephyr warm with thy sleek skin,
As hyaline as the skies above.
If you please, you may confide
In me thy secret stories of life,
And I assert, will I inveigle
Never, never, thee, divine child!”
Listening to his kind entreaty,
The fairy’s child blurted a word,
“Aye, I’ll tell thee, my young friend!”
So sweet was her voice that could compete
The beehives full to the brim in summer.
Enthralled was he, again and again,
Reverberated that luscious music
Against his mind, jolly calm and dumb.
Unabashed, did he approach her,
Looking at her dreamy blue eyes,
(Far from being mundane were they)
Faltered he, “What is thy name?
What’s thy breed, azure fae?
I know, nathless, of angels thou
Art the loveliest work, no doubt”.
These final words to himself did he
Muttered, cautious, lest could she
Know that did he well her know,
And found no need tell him anew.
Then melody divine, that once
He heard, would remain unheard to his woe.

“Elvia, you may call me, swain,
Or what you love, for not a soul
Profane am I as thou shouldst know
And need so not an earthly name.”
Replied she, and the shepherd was gay.
“Elvia, I know not what thou lov’st,
Nor can give thee what dost thou so,
This white rose may behove thy beauty,
Which I desire to see evermore.
I have this trifling possession of mine
Only to gift thee as may we
Never meet again, or may we
Never a country pleasure, so glad,
Will relish together in lonely morn.
Take it and hold with thy snowy hand!
Art thou garbed in flawless white,
And thy smooth hair’s all the more pale
Than any princess I have seen.
This poor soul has thus brought for thee
A rose, as white as a morning’s skin”.
Then she took his little gift,
And stood in delight, and welcomed him.
But she must return to her abode,
Far away from human’s ken,
Where everything be pure and white.
Elvia should now leave her swain
And carefree, thither fade and fly,
For dreamy raptures decoy and lie.

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Sarban Bhattacharya

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The spurt of corporeal pleasure is like a restive brooklet that falls into the serene but colossal ocean of peaceful rapture of mind.
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