Came laughing the first night
Lighting lives’ wick [spun wick or blossom-wick]
As light falls on me
Blossoms in a prime my youth
Laughed the young woman trembling
In eyes’ palace
Alluring beautiful flower of life [Alt. being]
On the feet of the husband offering love
With the touch of union
Melted in half-body
Bashfulness confounding as I gather
Happiness also of mine looks stealing
His [Alt. Its] impression leads me pulling
Into the heart of dream
This is a song of a newlywed bride feeling a mixture of joy, apprehension, devotion, and the promise of fulfillment. You can hear it here:
The language is straightforward except for the word “ardhanga” which means half-body as well as a wife, or as in English, the better half.
There is lightness and innocence, a naturalness to the experience and its expression which the poetic translation attempts to capture in eight syllables per line.
The bridal night with bliss arrives,
A lamp is lit of braided lives.
As shines the candle light on me,
My youth in prime felicity
Of a trembling bride, there arise
The smiles in depths of joyful eyes.
Enchanting is the flower of life,
The offered love of man and wife;
In the gentle touch of union
The two dissolve but into one.
Bewildered, bashful, I reclaim
Senses lost in a happy frame;
His presence leads me like a stream
In the heart of a lovely dream.
[Alt. for line 1 to avoid repetition of bride]
The night of troth with bliss arrives,
[Alt. for line 14 — better, but uses 9 syllables instead of 8]
Into the heart of a lovely dream.
Please read the comments below for an organic discussion of this translation, or read the “finished” version of these translations here: (pdf).