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At the Feet of The Mother

Madonna of Suffering, pp. 503-504

Opening Remarks
Savitri meets the Madonna of suffering who bears our pain and shocks of life and helps us to endure.

Deep compassion
Absorbed in a deep compassion’s ecstasy,
Lifting the mild ray of her patient gaze,
In soft sweet training words slowly she spoke:
“O Savitri, I am thy secret soul.

The Madonna of suffering is absorbed in a deep compassion’s ecstasy, her gaze is mildly luminous and patient as she looks as Savitri and speaks in soft sweet words introducing herself as the soul of Savitri.

Share the suffering
To share the suffering of the world I came,
I draw my children’s pangs into my breast.

She is there to share the suffering of the world and draws her suffering children to her heart.

Soul of the wailing
I am the nurse of the dolour beneath the stars;
I am the soul of all who wailing writhe
Under the ruthless harrow of the Gods.

She introduces herself as one who takes care of the pain that destiny brings. She is the nurse, her soul who wail and writhe under the hooves of fate and the ruthless plough of the Gods.

Woman, nurse and slave
I am woman, nurse and slave and beaten beast;
I tend the hands that gave me cruel blows.

Out of her compassion she nurses the beaten beast and enslaved woman. She tends the hands that gave her cruel blows.

Giver of the bowl of rice
The hearts that spurned my love and zeal I serve;
I am the courted queen, the pampered doll,
I am the giver of the bowl of rice,
I am the worshipped Angel of the House.

She is the courted queen, the pampered doll who feeds one and all with love and care and is worshiped as an angel of the house.

All that suffers and cries
I am in all that suffers and that cries.
She is in all that suffers and cries as a secret help.
Spirit in a world of pain
Mine is the prayer that climbs in vain from earth,
I am traversed by my creatures’ agonies,
I am the spirit in a world of pain.

She is the spirit in a world of pain. Hers is the prayer that climbs in vain from earth who is pierced by her creature’s agony.

Rent with grief and wrath
The scream of tortured flesh and tortured hearts
Fall’n back on heart and flesh unheard by Heaven
Has rent with helpless grief and wrath my soul.

Her soul is rent with helpless grief and wrath and the screams of tortured flesh and hearts that is unheard by Heaven.

No power to save
I have seen the peasant burning in his hut,
I have seen the slashed corpse of the slaughtered child,
Heard woman’s cry ravished and stripped and haled
Amid the bayings of the hell-hound mob,
I have looked on, I had no power to save.

She has seen the disasters and catastrophes that shake man and heard the cries of mobbed women and slaughtered children. She could solace but could not save.

Love without force
I have brought no arm of strength to aid or slay;
God gave me love, he gave me not his force.

God has given her love but not his force. She has no strength to save or slay.

Shared the toil
I have shared the toil of the yoked animal drudge
Pushed by the goad, encouraged by the whip;
I have shared the fear-filled life of bird and beast,
Its long hunt for the day’s precarious food,
Its covert slink and crouch and hungry prowl,
Its pain and terror seized by beak and claw.

Not only human beings, she has shared the toil, the whip the goad of the animal and the fear filled life of bird and beast with its long hunt for the day’s precarious food, its prowl and hunger, its pain and terror seized by the claw.

Burden of misery
I have shared the daily life of common men,
Its petty pleasures and its petty cares,
Its press of troubles and haggard horde of ills,
Earth’s trail of sorrow hopeless of relief,
The unwanted tedious labour without joy,
And the burden of misery and the strokes of fate.

She has shared the daily life of common men with all its petty cares and small pleasures, its share of troubles and horde of maladies. She shares earth’s sorrow that has no hope of relief, the meaningless joyless drudgery and the burden of misery and the blows of fate.

Closing Remarks
The Madonna of suffering is the power of God that helps us endure and yet keep the will to live and hope even when everything seems bleak and hopeless.

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