BOOK 7: UTTARA KANDA
Having at first conducted Sita to the spacious and we11 decorated boat plied by fishermen Lakshmana himself set it up. Thereupon he ordered Sumantra to wait there with the chariot, and being beside himself with sorrow ordered the silors to move on.
Thereupon having reached the other side of Bhagirathi, Lakshmana, with subdued voice and folded palms, said to Sita "O daughter of the king of Videha, this, thougth pierced my heart like a dart, that my brother, by making me the instrumental of this action hath made me the object of censure in the world. The death and the sin consequent upon it are better than the action I am engaged in. Be thou propitiated, O beautiful damsel, do it hold me responsible for this.
Saying this, the humble Lakshmana began to weep and pray for death. Beholding him thus overwhelmed, Sita said "What is the matter, Lakshmana ?I do not understand anything. Do thou speak out everything plainly unto me.
I find thee beside myself (with grief) ;is it all well with the kingdom ?In the name of the king, do thou give out unto me, the cause of thy sorrow." Sita having addressed him thus, Lakshmana, with a poorly heart and suppressed tone, said "O worshipful queen; I have kept within my heat all those words, which the king said, before he entered his palace, rendered sorry and impatient on hearing in the assembly the report of censure regarding thee, O daughter of king Janaka. All those words are indeed above desciption and so I desist.
I only say so much, that afraid of the calumny of the citizens he hath renounced thee although thy purity was sufficiently proved before me. But for that, do not consider thyself in any way guilty. Rama hath commanded me to leave thee near the hermitage on the pretext of satisfying thine desire as thou art big with a child.
Do not uselessly give vent to sorrow any more. There is the holy hermitage of the saints on the banks of Janhavi. There lives Valmiki, the foremost of saints, a great friend of our sire Dasaratha.
O daughter of Janaka, approaching that high souled saint, do thou spend thy days happily keeping Rama always in thy mind. Do thou satisfy the Devas, O chaste damsel. This shall crown then with auspiciousness.