Kurabaka クラバカ


I found two plants mentioned as this flower, and as I could not decide which fits better to the poem, I am listing both here.


Amaranthus paniculatus(left)
A tall, stout, annual herb. Leaves simple, ovate to ovate-rhomboid, glabrous. Flowers red in simple or branched axillary and terminal spikes. Fruit ovoid, circumscissile. Seed subglobose. Flowering-fruiting August to December. (Ashok Sheth (Ed.). 2005 The herbs of ayurveda vol.1 Gujarat : Ashok Sheth. p80)

or


Barleria Prionitis(right)
A glabrous prickly undershrub stems 4-gonous. Leaves alliptic, simple, acuminate, inter-petrolar spines. Flowers sessile, often solitary, yellow, bracts foliaceous, irregular. Fruit capsules, ovoid-conical, beaked, 2-seeded. Flowering-fruiting September to april.(Ashok Sheth (Ed.). 2005 The herbs of ayurveda vol.1 Gujarat : Ashok Sheth. p154)

हस्ते लीलाकमलमलकं बालकुन्दानुविद्धं

नीता रोध्रप्रसवरजसा पण्डुतामाननश्रीः ।

चूदापाशे नवकुरबकं चारु कर्णे शिरीषं

सीमन्ते च त्वदुपगमजं यत्र नीपं वधूनाम् ॥ ६५ ॥

There, in the women’s hand, is a red lotus to play with;
Her ringlet is adorned with young Kunda;
The grace of her face is made fair with the pollen of the Rodhra flowers;
On the braids at the head, fresh Kurabaka; on her hairs, lovely Śirīṣa;
And at the hairline, Nīpa which has sprung upon your approach. (65)

手には遊びの赤睡蓮[カマラ] 髪の一房は若きクンダの花で飾り
ロードゥラの花の粉は麗しき面[おもて]をほの白く染め
頭上の髪束には摘みたてのクラバカ 耳元には愛らしきシリーシャ
額の際にはきみの訪れに咲いたニーパの花を、女たちは(六五)


A description of (the women in) the Yakṣa’s hometown Alakā. Kimura (1962: 253) writes that they are flowers from different seasons but florishing all at once as this is a place of the demi-gods.

[Reference: Kimura, Hideo 1962. Kālidāsa Literature Series No.1: jojōshi kisetsushū kumo no shisha. Kyoto: Hyakka-en.]


रक्ताशोकश्चलकिसलयः केसरश्चात्र कान्तः

प्रत्यासन्नौ कुरबकवृतेर्माधवीमण्डपस्य ।

एकः सख्यास्तव सह मया वामपादाभिलाषी

काङ्क्षत्यन्यो वदनमदिरां दोहदच्छद्मनास्याः ॥ ७५ ॥

The red Aśoka tree’s fresh leaves are wavering and Kesara is lovely
Near the hedge of Kurabaka and the pavillion of Mādhavī.
The former longs for the left foot of your female friend my lover, just like me;
The latter desires her mouthful of wine, pretending it yearns to bloom. (75)

赤きアショーカは若葉を揺らし、ここで ケーサラは愛らしく
クラバカの垣根 マーダヴィーのあずまやの傍で
一つはきみの女友だちの左足を、私とともに 切に望み
いま一つは彼女の口含んだ酒を 蕾もつものの望みにかこつけて欲するだろう(七五)


Somewhere near the Yakṣa’s home in Alakā. The first is Aśoka and the other is Kesara. According to Kale (1999: 132), “The Aśoka is said to put forth flowers when kicked with her left foot by a beautiful woman” and Kesara “is poetically described as putting forth blossoms when sprinkled over with mouthful of wine by young ladies”.
[Reference: Kale, M. R. 1999. The Meghadūta of Kālidāsa. Corrected Edition. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Private Limited.]

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(c) Tomomi Sato 2013

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