I am pale with longing for my beloved

by Mirabai

English version by Nita Ramaiya


I am pale with longing for my beloved;
     People believe I am ill.
Seizing on every possible pretext,
     I try to meet him "by accident."

They have sent for a country doctor;
     He grabs my arm and prods it;
How can he diagnose my pain?
     It's in my heart that I am afflicted.

Go home, country doctor,
     Don't address me by my name;
It's the name of God that has wounded me,
     Don't force your medicines on me.

The sweetness of his lips is a pot of nectar,
     That's the only curd for which I crave;
Mira's Lord is Giridhar Naagar.
     He will feed me nectar again and again.

-- from Women Writing in India: 600 BC to the Present: Volume 1, Edited by Susie Tharu / Edited by K. Lalita

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I am pale with