Rāmāyana | Ayodhyā Kaṇḍa | Chapter 89

89. Bhārata Reaches Bharadvāja's Hermitage

[Guha arranges to ferry Bhārata along with his family members and army across Ganga. Then they all travel and reach near the hermitage of saint Bharadvāja.]

Bhārata, after spending that night on the banks of Ganga, got up at dawn and told Śatrughna. 89.1

"Śatrughna are you asleep. You be safe. Please go and bring Guha, the Lord of Niṣādas speedily. He will help us and the army to cross the river Ganga." 89.2

Śatrughna replied when urged like this, "I have not been sleeping but I have been continuously thinking about Rāma." 89.3

While the lions among were talking like this, Guha came in time and, saluted them and told Bhārata. 89.4

"Did you spent the night comfortably on the banks of the river. I hope you and your army had no inconvenience." 89.5

Hearing those affectionate words of Guha, Bhārata, who was partial to Rāma told. 89.6

"Oh king, the night was comfortable. We have been honoured by you. Please instruct your servants to ferry us across the Ganga in their innumerable boats." 89.7

Guha on hearing the orders of Bhārata, went quickly to his town and told his clan members. 89.8

"Get up, awake. Safety to you for all time. Haul down your boats and let us ferry this army across the river. 89.9

As per the order of the king they all got up quickly and brought five hundred boats. 89.10

They also brought other luxury boats called Swastika, which had large bells, had flags, were magnificent looking, built solidly and were suitable for sailing. 89.11

Guha then Brought another auspicious Swastika boat, covered with white wool blankets and filled with pleasing sounds. 89.12

Vasiṣṭha and other important Brahmins boarded that boat first. Later it was boarded by Bhārata, Śatrughna, Kauśalya, Sumitrā and other women of the king's house and wives of the king. In that boat their wagons and supplies were boarded. 89.13-89.14

The sound of people burning their temporary shelters, their getting down in waters and boarding all the materials in the boats reached the heavens. 89.15

Controlled by flags and propelled by the fishermen, those boats boarded by and carrying men moved very speedily. 89.16

Some boards carried women, some others were filled with horses, some others carried draught animals and carriages and some great treasures. 89.17

When the boats reached the other shore all the people disembarked and those fishermen returned making lovely formations in the river. 89.18

The elephants decorated by flags and goaded by Mahouts while they were crossing the river shined like mountains. 89.19

Apart from those who crossed by boats, others crossed either by rafts and large pots or swam and crossed the river. 89.20

The auspicious army which was ferried across the river by fishermen reached the holy forest of Prayāga in the Maitra holy period. 89.21

After giving rest to the army, the great soul Bhārata, allowing them to live as per their pleasure set out along with his priests, to see the very great saint Bharadvāja. 89.22

Having approached the hermitage of the great Brahmin, who was a great soul and priest of the devas, he saw delightful huts and multitude of trees and the charming forest of the best of Brahmins. 89.23

This is the end of Eighty Ninth Sarga of Ayodhyā Kanda which occurs in Holy Rāmāyaṇa composed by Vālmīki as the First Epic.