With this firm declaration, Kaikeyi stopped. Dasaratha stood speechless, staring
at his pitiless wife. Was this lovely creation really Kaikeyi or a demon? Then, like a
huge tree felled by a forester with his axe, the King shook and toppled down and lay
stretched unconscious on the floor in pitiful ruin.
Regaining his senses after a while, he
spoke in a low voice: "Kaikeyi, who has corrupted your mind to see me dead and our
race destroyed? What evil spirit has possessed you and makes you dance in this shameless
fashion? Do you really think that Bharata will agree to be king after sending Raama to the
forest? He never will, and you know it. Can I possibly bear to tell Raama to go to the
forest? Will not the kings of the world despise me, saying, 'This uxorious old dotard has
banished his eldest son, the best of men'? Don't you see that they would laugh at me? It
is easy enough for you to say 'Send Raama away to the forest,' but can Kausalya or I
survive his departure? And have you thought of Janaka's daughter? Would it not kill her to
hear that Raama is to go away to the Dandaka forest?