Madame A. Christina Albers

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The Bride

Śuddhodana, remembering prophecies
Liked not the brooding mind of young Siddhārtha,
And on advice of the State Ministers
Arranged for the young Prince His early nuptials.
Then went the royal mandate through the land:
The youthful maidens of the Princely houses
Were told to come to Śuddhodana’s Court;
And they appeared, a glorious procession:
The golden dew of budding maidenhood
The rosy buds of young life’s glowing spring time.
Each was to get a present from the Prince.
And robed in garments bright and irridescent,
That vied with rose beauty of each face,
They passed the Throne shyly their lashes lifting
And then moved on, blushing with timid smile,
Till came the last flower of that golden garland,
The fairest of the Princely maidens all,
Yaśodharā, a spring of laughing water,
Not timid she, but frankly stepped she forth.
The deep look of her eye, her very presence
Awakened memories in Siddhārtha’s mind
Of a great love in long forgotten ages,
And each saw in the other’s soul revealed
Its own pure higher self, its greater being.
And was Yaśodharā the chosen bride.
But in those days, when princes wooed a maiden
They had to win the prize by feat of arms.
Then were the heralds sent through all the kingdom
And came the young Knights for the tournament.
But none surpassed the Prince in manly vigour,
In courage and in military skill.
And now the bridal of unequalled splendour,
And then fond home days in the palace walls.
In time a child was born, a son, Rāhula.
The good king’s father-heart at last felt peace.
‘My son has found His own, His heart is happy.’
He knew not the great soul of his own son.