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Ch. 3: The Miracle of Purun Bhagat

The night we felt the earth would move
We stole and plucked him by the hand,
Because we loved him with the love
That knows but cannot understand.

And when the roaring hillside broke,
And all our world fell down in rain,
We saved him, we the Little Folk;
But lo! he does not come again!

Mourn now, we saved him for the sake
Of such poor love as wild ones may.
Mourn ye! Our brother will not wake,
And his own kind drive us away!

Dirge of the Langurs.

There was once a man in India who was Prime Minister of one of
the semi-independent native States in the north-western part of
the country. He was a Brahmin, so high-caste that caste ceased
to have any particular meaning for him; and his father had been
an important official in the gay-coloured tag-rag and bobtail of
an old-fashioned Hindu Court. But as Purun Dass grew up he felt
that the old order of things was changing, and that if any one
wished to get on in the world he must stand well with the
English, and imitate all that the English believed to be good.
At the same time a native official must keep his own master's
favour. This was a difficult game, but the quiet, close-mouthed
young Brahmin, helped by a good English education at a Bombay
University, played it coolly, and rose, step by step, to be
Prime Minister of the kingdom. That is to say, he held more real
power than his master the Maharajah.

When the old king--who was suspicious of the English, their
railways and telegraphs--died, Purun Dass stood high with his
young successor, who had been tutored by an Englishman; and
between them, though he always took care that his master should
have the credit, they established schools for little girls,
made roads, and started State dispensaries and shows of
agricultural implements, and published a yearly blue-book on
the "Moral and Material Progress of the State," and the Foreign
Office and the Government of India were delighted. Very few
native States take up English progress altogether, for they will
not believe, as Purun Dass showed he did, that what was good for
the Englishman must be twice as good for the Asiatic. The Prime
Minister became the honoured friend of Viceroys, and Governors,
and Lieutenant-Governors, and medical missionaries, and common
missionaries, and hard-riding English officers who came to shoot
in the State preserves, as well as of whole hosts of tourists
who travelled up and down India in the cold weather, showing how
things ought to be managed. In his spare time he would endow
scholarships for the study of medicine and manufactures on
strictly English lines, and write letters to the "Pioneer",
the greatest Indian daily paper, explaining his master's aims
and objects.

At last he went to England on a visit, and had to pay enormous
sums to the priests when he came back; for even so high-caste a
Brahmin as Purun Dass lost caste by crossing the black sea.
In London he met and talked with every one worth knowing--
men whose names go all over the world--and saw a great deal
more than he said. He was given honorary degrees by learned
universities, and he made speeches and talked of Hindu social
reform to English ladies in evening dress, till all London
cried, "This is the most fascinating man we have ever met at
dinner since cloths were first laid."

When he returned to India there was a blaze of glory, for
the Viceroy himself made a special visit to confer upon the
Maharajah the Grand Cross of the Star of India--all diamonds
and ribbons and enamel; and at the same ceremony, while the
cannon boomed, Purun Dass was made a Knight Commander of the
Order of the Indian Empire; so that his name stood Sir Purun
Dass, K.C.I.E.

That evening, at dinner in the big Viceregal tent, he stood up
with the badge and the collar of the Order on his breast,
and replying to the toast of his master's health, made a speech
few Englishmen could have bettered.

Next month, when the city had returned to its sun-baked quiet,
he did a thing no Englishman would have dreamed of doing;
for, so far as the world's affairs went, he died. The jewelled
order of his knighthood went back to the Indian Government,
and a new Prime Minister was appointed to the charge of affairs,
and a great game of General Post began in all the subordinate
appointments. The priests knew what had happened, and the people
guessed; but India is the one place in the world where a man can
do as he pleases and nobody asks why; and the fact that Dewan
Sir Purun Dass, K.C.I.E., had resigned position, palace, and
power, and taken up the begging-bowl and ochre-coloured dress of
a Sunnyasi, or holy man, was considered nothing extraordinary.
He had been, as the Old Law recommends, twenty years a youth,
twenty years a fighter,--though he had never carried a weapon in
his life,--and twenty years head of a household. He had used his
wealth and his power for what he knew both to be worth; he had
taken honour when it came his way; he had seen men and cities
far and near, and men and cities had stood up and honoured him.
Now he would let those things go, as a man drops the cloak he no
longer needs.

Behind him, as he walked through the city gates, an antelope
skin and brass-handled crutch under his arm, and a begging-bowl
of polished brown coco-de-mer in his hand, barefoot, alone, with
eyes cast on the ground--behind him they were firing salutes
from the bastions in honour of his happy successor. Purun Dass
nodded. All that life was ended; and he bore it no more ill-will
or good-will than a man bears to a colourless dream of the
night. He was a Sunnyasi--a houseless, wandering mendicant,
depending on his neighbours for his daily bread; and so long as
there is a morsel to divide in India, neither priest nor beggar
starves. He had never in his life tasted meat, and very seldom
eaten even fish. A five-pound note would have covered his
personal expenses for food through any one of the many years in
which he had been absolute master of millions of money. Even
when he was being lionised in London he had held before him his
dream of peace and quiet--the long, white, dusty Indian road,
printed all over with bare feet, the incessant, slow-moving
traffic, and the sharp-smelling wood smoke curling up under
the fig-trees in the twilight, where the wayfarers sit at their
evening meal.

When the time came to make that dream true the Prime Minister
took the proper steps, and in three days you might more easily
have found a bubble in the trough of the long Atlantic seas,
than Purun Dass among the roving, gathering, separating millions
of India.

At night his antelope skin was spread where the darkness
overtook him--sometimes in a Sunnyasi monastery by the roadside;
sometimes by a mud-pillar shrine of Kala Pir, where the Jogis,
who are another misty division of holy men, would receive him as
they do those who know what castes and divisions are worth;
sometimes on the outskirts of a little Hindu village, where
the children would steal up with the food their parents had
prepared; and sometimes on the pitch of the bare grazing-
grounds, where the flame of his stick fire waked the drowsy
camels. It was all one to Purun Dass--or Purun Bhagat, as he
called himself now. Earth, people, and food were all one. But
unconsciously his feet drew him away northward and eastward;
from the south to Rohtak; from Rohtak to Kurnool; from Kurnool
to ruined Samanah, and then up-stream along the dried bed of the
Gugger river that fills only when the rain falls in the hills,
till one day he saw the far line of the great Himalayas.

Then Purun Bhagat smiled, for he remembered that his mother was
of Rajput Brahmin birth, from Kulu way--a Hill-woman, always
home-sick for the snows--and that the least touch of Hill blood
draws a man in the end back to where he belongs.

"Yonder," said Purun Bhagat, breasting the lower slopes of
the Sewaliks, where the cacti stand up like seven-branched
candlesticks-"yonder I shall sit down and get knowledge";
and the cool wind of the Himalayas whistled about his ears
as he trod the road that led to Simla.

The last time he had come that way it had been in state, with
a clattering cavalry escort, to visit the gentlest and most
affable of Viceroys; and the two had talked for an hour together
about mutual friends in London, and what the Indian common folk
really thought of things. This time Purun Bhagat paid no calls,
but leaned on the rail of the Mall, watching that glorious view
of the Plains spread out forty miles below, till a native
Mohammedan policeman told him he was obstructing traffic; and
Purun Bhagat salaamed reverently to the Law, because he knew the
value of it, and was seeking for a Law of his own. Then he moved
on, and slept that night in an empty hut at Chota Simla, which
looks like the very last end of the earth, but it was only the
beginning of his journey. He followed the Himalaya-Thibet road,
the little ten-foot track that is blasted out of solid rock,
or strutted out on timbers over gulfs a thousand feet deep;
that dips into warm, wet, shut-in valleys, and climbs out
across bare, grassy hill-shoulders where the sun strikes like
a burning-glass; or turns through dripping, dark forests where
the tree-ferns dress the trunks from head to heel, and the
pheasant calls to his mate. And he met Thibetan herdsmen with
their dogs and flocks of sheep, each sheep with a little bag of
borax on his back, and wandering wood-cutters, and cloaked and
blanketed Lamas from Thibet, coming into India on pilgrimage,
and envoys of little solitary Hill-states, posting furiously on
ring-streaked and piebald ponies, or the cavalcade of a Rajah
paying a visit; or else for a long, clear day he would see
nothing more than a black bear grunting and rooting below in the
valley. When he first started, the roar of the world he had left
still rang in his ears, as the roar of a tunnel rings long after
the train has passed through; but when he had put the Mutteeanee
Pass behind him that was all done, and Purun Bhagat was alone
with himself, walking, wondering, and thinking, his eyes on the
ground, and his thoughts with the clouds.

One evening he crossed the highest pass he had met till then--it
had been a two-day's climb--and came out on a line of snow-peaks
that banded all the horizon--mountains from fifteen to twenty
thousand feet high, looking almost near enough to hit with a
stone, though they were fifty or sixty miles away. The pass was
crowned with dense, dark forest--deodar, walnut, wild cherry,
wild olive, and wild pear, but mostly deodar, which is the
Himalayan cedar; and under the shadow of the deodars stood a
deserted shrine to Kali--who is Durga, who is Sitala, who is
sometimes worshipped against the smallpox.

Purun Dass swept the stone floor clean, smiled at the grinning
statue, made himself a little mud fireplace at the back of the
shrine, spread his antelope skin on a bed of fresh pine-needles,
tucked his bairagi--his brass-handled crutch--under his armpit,
and sat down to rest.

Immediately below him the hillside fell away, clean and cleared
for fifteen hundred feet, where a little village of stone-walled
houses, with roofs of beaten earth, clung to the steep tilt.
All round it the tiny terraced fields lay out like aprons of
patchwork on the knees of the mountain, and cows no bigger than
beetles grazed between the smooth stone circles of the
threshing-floors. Looking across the valley, the eye was
deceived by the size of things, and could not at first realise
that what seemed to be low scrub, on the opposite mountain-
flank, was in truth a forest of hundred-foot pines. Purun Bhagat
saw an eagle swoop across the gigantic hollow, but the great
bird dwindled to a dot ere it was half-way over. A few bands of
scattered clouds strung up and down the valley, catching on a
shoulder of the hills, or rising up and dying out when they were
level with the head of the pass. And "Here shall I find peace,"
said Purun Bhagat.

Now, a Hill-man makes nothing of a few hundred feet up or down,
and as soon as the villagers saw the smoke in the deserted
shrine, the village priest climbed up the terraced hillside to
welcome the stranger.

When he met Purun Bhagat's eyes--the eyes of a man used to
control thousands--he bowed to the earth, took the begging-bowl
without a word, and returned to the village, saying, "We have at
last a holy man. Never have I seen such a man. He is of the
Plains--but pale-coloured--a Brahmin of the Brahmins." Then all
the housewives of the village said, "Think you he will stay with
us?" and each did her best to cook the most savoury meal for the
Bhagat. Hill-food is very simple, but with buckwheat and Indian
corn, and rice and red pepper, and little fish out of the stream
in the valley, and honey from the flue-like hives built in the
stone walls, and dried apricots, and turmeric, and wild ginger,
and bannocks of flour, a devout woman can make good things, and
it was a full bowl that the priest carried to the Bhagat. Was
he going to stay? asked the priest. Would he need a chela--
a disciple--to beg for him? Had he a blanket against the cold
weather? Was the food good?

Purun Bhagat ate, and thanked the giver. It was in his mind to
stay. That was sufficient, said the priest. Let the begging-bowl
be placed outside the shrine, in the hollow made by those two
twisted roots, and daily should the Bhagat be fed; for the
village felt honoured that such a man--he looked timidly into
the Bhagat's face--should tarry among them.

That day saw the end of Purun Bhagat's wanderings. He had come
to the place appointed for him--the silence and the space. After
this, time stopped, and he, sitting at the mouth of the shrine,
could not tell whether he were alive or dead; a man with control
of his limbs, or a part of the hills, and the clouds, and the
shifting rain and sunlight. He would repeat a Name softly to
himself a hundred hundred times, till, at each repetition, he
seemed to move more and more out of his body, sweeping up to the
doors of some tremendous discovery; but, just as the door was
opening, his body would drag him back, and, with grief, he felt
he was locked up again in the flesh and bones of Purun Bhagat.

Every morning the filled begging-bowl was laid silently in the
crutch of the roots outside the shrine. Sometimes the priest
brought it; sometimes a Ladakhi trader, lodging in the village,
and anxious to get merit, trudged up the path; but, more often,
it was the woman who had cooked the meal overnight; and she
would murmur, hardly above her breath. "Speak for me before the
gods, Bhagat. Speak for such a one, the wife of so-and-so!"
Now and then some bold child would be allowed the honour, and
Purun Bhagat would hear him drop the bowl and run as fast as his
little legs could carry him, but the Bhagat never came down to
the village. It was laid out like a map at his feet. He could
see the evening gatherings, held on the circle of the threshing-
floors, because that was the only level ground; could see the
wonderful unnamed green of the young rice, the indigo blues of
the Indian corn, the dock-like patches of buckwheat, and, in its
season, the red bloom of the amaranth, whose tiny seeds, being
neither grain nor pulse, make a food that can be lawfully eaten
by Hindus in time of fasts.

When the year turned, the roofs of the huts were all little
squares of purest gold, for it was on the roofs that they
laid out their cobs of the corn to dry. Hiving and harvest,
rice-sowing and husking, passed before his eyes, all embroidered
down there on the many-sided plots of fields, and he thought of
them all, and wondered what they all led to at the long last.

Even in populated India a man cannot a day sit still before the
wild things run over him as though he were a rock; and in that
wilderness very soon the wild things, who knew Kali's Shrine
well, came back to look at the intruder. The langurs, the big
gray-whiskered monkeys of the Himalayas, were, naturally, the
first, for they are alive with curiosity; and when they had
upset the begging-bowl, and rolled it round the floor, and
tried their teeth on the brass-handled crutch, and made faces
at the antelope skin, they decided that the human being who
sat so still was harmless. At evening, they would leap down
from the pines, and beg with their hands for things to eat,
and then swing off in graceful curves. They liked the warmth
of the fire, too, and huddled round it till Purun Bhagat had
to push them aside to throw on more fuel; and in the morning,
as often as not, he would find a furry ape sharing his blanket.
All day long, one or other of the tribe would sit by his side,
staring out at the snows, crooning and looking unspeakably wise
and sorrowful.

After the monkeys came the barasingh, that big deer which is
like our red deer, but stronger. He wished to rub off the velvet
of his horns against the cold stones of Kali's statue, and
stamped his feet when he saw the man at the shrine. But Purun
Bhagat never moved, and, little by little, the royal stag edged
up and nuzzled his shoulder. Purun Bhagat slid one cool hand
along the hot antlers, and the touch soothed the fretted beast,
who bowed his head, and Purun Bhagat very softly rubbed and
ravelled off the velvet. Afterward, the barasingh brought his
doe and fawn--gentle things that mumbled on the holy man's
blanket--or would come alone at night, his eyes green in the
fire-flicker, to take his share of fresh walnuts. At last, the
musk-deer, the shyest and almost the smallest of the deerlets,
came, too, her big rabbity ears erect; even brindled, silent
mushick-nabha must needs find out what the light in the shrine
meant, and drop out her moose-like nose into Purun Bhagat's lap,
coming and going with the shadows of the fire. Purun Bhagat
called them all "my brothers," and his low call of "Bhai! Bhai!"
would draw them from the forest at noon if they were within ear
shot. The Himalayan black bear, moody and suspicious--Sona, who
has the V-shaped white mark under his chin--passed that way more
than once; and since the Bhagat showed no fear, Sona showed no
anger, but watched him, and came closer, and begged a share of
the caresses, and a dole of bread or wild berries. Often, in the
still dawns, when the Bhagat would climb to the very crest of
the pass to watch the red day walking along the peaks of the
snows, he would find Sona shuffling and grunting at his heels,
thrusting, a curious fore-paw under fallen trunks, and bringing
it away with a WHOOF of impatience; or his early steps would
wake Sona where he lay curled up, and the great brute, rising
erect, would think to fight, till he heard the Bhagat's voice
and knew his best friend.

Nearly all hermits and holy men who live apart from the big
cities have the reputation of being able to work miracles with
the wild things, but all the miracle lies in keeping still, in
never making a hasty movement, and, for a long time, at least,
in never looking directly at a visitor. The villagers saw the
outline of the barasingh stalking like a shadow through the
dark forest behind the shrine; saw the minaul, the Himalayan
pheasant, blazing in her best colours before Kali's statue;
and the langurs on their haunches, inside, playing with the
walnut shells. Some of the children, too, had heard Sona singing
to himself, bear-fashion, behind the fallen rocks, and the
Bhagat's reputation as miracle-worker stood firm.

Yet nothing was farther from his mind than miracles. He believed
that all things were one big Miracle, and when a man knows that
much he knows something to go upon. He knew for a certainty that
there was nothing great and nothing little in this world: and
day and night he strove to think out his way into the heart of
things, back to the place whence his soul had come.

So thinking, his untrimmed hair fell down about his shoulders,
the stone slab at the side of the antelope skin was dented into
a little hole by the foot of his brass-handled crutch, and the
place between the tree-trunks, where the begging-bowl rested day
after day, sunk and wore into a hollow almost as smooth as the
brown shell itself; and each beast knew his exact place at the
fire. The fields changed their colours with the seasons; the
threshing-floors filled and emptied, and filled again and again;
and again and again, when winter came, the langurs frisked among
the branches feathered with light snow, till the mother-monkeys
brought their sad-eyed little babies up from the warmer valleys
with the spring. There were few changes in the village. The
priest was older, and many of the little children who used to
come with the begging-dish sent their own children now; and when
you asked of the villagers how long their holy man had lived in
Kali's Shrine at the head of the pass, they answered, "Always."

Then came such summer rains as had not been known in the Hills
for many seasons. Through three good months the valley was
wrapped in cloud and soaking mist--steady, unrelenting downfall,
breaking off into thunder-shower after thunder-shower. Kali's
Shrine stood above the clouds, for the most part, and there was
a whole month in which the Bhagat never caught a glimpse of his
village. It was packed away under a white floor of cloud that
swayed and shifted and rolled on itself and bulged upward, but
never broke from its piers--the streaming flanks of the valley.

All that time he heard nothing but the sound of a million little
waters, overhead from the trees, and underfoot along the ground,
soaking through the pine-needles, dripping from the tongues of
draggled fern, and spouting in newly-torn muddy channels down
the slopes. Then the sun came out, and drew forth the good
incense of the deodars and the rhododendrons, and that far-off,
clean smell which the Hill people call "the smell of the snows."
The hot sunshine lasted for a week, and then the rains gathered
together for their last downpour, and the water fell in sheets
that flayed off the skin of the ground and leaped back in mud.
Purun Bhagat heaped his fire high that night, for he was sure
his brothers would need warmth; but never a beast came to the
shrine, though he called and called till he dropped asleep,
wondering what had happened in the woods.

It was in the black heart of the night, the rain drumming like a
thousand drums, that he was roused by a plucking at his blanket,
and, stretching out, felt the little hand of a langur. "It is
better here than in the trees," he said sleepily, loosening a
fold of blanket; "take it and be warm." The monkey caught his
hand and pulled hard. "Is it food, then?" said Purun Bhagat.
"Wait awhile, and I will prepare some." As he kneeled to throw
fuel on the fire the langur ran to the door of the shrine,
crooned and ran back again, plucking at the man's knee.

"What is it? What is thy trouble, Brother?" said Purun Bhagat,
for the langur's eyes were full of things that he could not
tell. "Unless one of thy caste be in a trap--and none set traps
here--I will not go into that weather. Look, Brother, even the
barasingh comes for shelter!"

The deer's antlers clashed as he strode into the shrine, clashed
against the grinning statue of Kali. He lowered them in Purun
Bhagat's direction and stamped uneasily, hissing through his
half-shut nostrils.

"Hai! Hai! Hai!" said the Bhagat, snapping his fingers, "Is THIS
payment for a night's lodging?" But the deer pushed him toward
the door, and as he did so Purun Bhagat heard the sound of
something opening with a sigh, and saw two slabs of the floor
draw away from each other, while the sticky earth below smacked
its lips.

"Now I see," said Purun Bhagat. "No blame to my brothers that
they did not sit by the fire to-night. The mountain is falling.
And yet-- why should I go?" His eye fell on the empty begging-
bowl, and his face changed. "They have given me good food daily
since--since I came, and, if I am not swift, to-morrow there
will not be one mouth in the valley. Indeed, I must go and warn
them below. Back there, Brother! Let me get to the fire."

The barasingh backed unwillingly as Purun Bhagat drove a pine
torch deep into the flame, twirling it till it was well lit.
"Ah! ye came to warn me," he said, rising. "Better than that we
shall do; better than that. Out, now, and lend me thy neck,
Brother, for I have but two feet."

He clutched the bristling withers of the barasingh with his
right hand, held the torch away with his left, and stepped out
of the shrine into the desperate night. There was no breath of
wind, but the rain nearly drowned the flare as the great deer
hurried down the slope, sliding on his haunches. As soon as they
were clear of the forest more of the Bhagat's brothers joined
them. He heard, though he could not see, the langurs pressing
about him, and behind them the uhh! uhh! of Sona. The rain
matted his long white hair into ropes; the water splashed
beneath his bare feet, and his yellow robe clung to his frail
old body, but he stepped down steadily, leaning against the
barasingh. He was no longer a holy man, but Sir Purun Dass,
K.C.I.E., Prime Minister of no small State, a man accustomed
to command, going out to save life. Down the steep, plashy path
they poured all together, the Bhagat and his brothers, down and
down till the deer's feet clicked and stumbled on the wall of a
threshing-floor, and he snorted because he smelt Man. Now they
were at the head of the one crooked village street, and the
Bhagat beat with his crutch on the barred windows of the
blacksmith's house, as his torch blazed up in the shelter of
the eaves. "Up and out!" cried Purun Bhagat; and he did not
know his own voice, for it was years since he had spoken aloud
to a man. "The hill falls! The hill is falling! Up and out, oh,
you within!"

"It is our Bhagat," said the blacksmith's wife. He stands among
his beasts. Gather the little ones and give the call."

It ran from house to house, while the beasts, cramped in the
narrow way, surged and huddled round the Bhagat, and Sona
puffed impatiently.

The people hurried into the street--they were no more than
seventy souls all told--and in the glare of the torches they
saw their Bhagat holding back the terrified barasingh, while
the monkeys plucked piteously at his skirts, and Sona sat on
his haunches and roared.

"Across the valley and up the next hill!" shouted Purun Bhagat.
"Leave none behind! We follow!"

Then the people ran as only Hill folk can run, for they knew
that in a landslip you must climb for the highest ground across
the valley. They fled, splashing through the little river at
the bottom, and panted up the terraced fields on the far side,
while the Bhagat and his brethren followed. Up and up the
opposite mountain they climbed, calling to each other by name--
the roll-call of the village--and at their heels toiled the big
barasingh, weighted by the failing strength of Purun Bhagat.
At last the deer stopped in the shadow of a deep pinewood, five
hundred feet up the hillside. His instinct, that had warned him
of the coming slide, told him he would he safe here.

Purun Bhagat dropped fainting by his side, for the chill of the
rain and that fierce climb were killing him; but first he called
to the scattered torches ahead, "Stay and count your numbers";
then, whispering to the deer as he saw the lights gather in a
cluster: "Stay with me, Brother. Stay--till--I--go!"

There was a sigh in the air that grew to a mutter, and a mutter
that grew to a roar, and a roar that passed all sense of
hearing, and the hillside on which the villagers stood was hit
in the darkness, and rocked to the blow. Then a note as steady,
deep, and true as the deep C of the organ drowned everything for
perhaps five minutes, while the very roots of the pines quivered
to it. It died away, and the sound of the rain falling on miles
of hard ground and grass changed to the muffled drum of water on
soft earth. That told its own tale.

Never a villager--not even the priest--was bold enough to speak
to the Bhagat who had saved their lives. They crouched under the
pines and waited till the day. When it came they looked across
the valley and saw that what had been forest, and terraced
field, and track-threaded grazing-ground was one raw, red,
fan-shaped smear, with a few trees flung head-down on the scarp.
That red ran high up the hill of their refuge, damming back the
little river, which had begun to spread into a brick-coloured
lake. Of the village, of the road to the shrine, of the shrine
itself, and the forest behind, there was no trace. For one mile
in width and two thousand feet in sheer depth the mountain-side
had come away bodily, planed clean from head to heel.

And the villagers, one by one, crept through the wood to pray
before their Bhagat. They saw the barasingh standing over him,
who fled when they came near, and they heard the langurs wailing
in the branches, and Sona moaning up the hill; but their Bhagat
was dead, sitting cross-legged, his back against a tree, his
crutch under his armpit, and his face turned to the north-east.

The priest said: "Behold a miracle after a miracle, for in this
very attitude must all Sunnyasis be buried! Therefore where he
now is we will build the temple to our holy man."

They built the temple before a year was ended--a little stone-
and-earth shrine--and they called the hill the Bhagat's hill,
and they worship there with lights and flowers and offerings to
this day. But they do not know that the saint of their worship
is the late Sir Purun Dass, K.C.I.E., D.C.L., Ph.D., etc., once
Prime Minister of the progressive and enlightened State of
Mohiniwala, and honorary or corresponding member of more learned
and scientific societies than will ever do any good in this
world or the next.

Rudyard Kipling