that forest full of uneven places and thorns and prickles and cumbered with the crumbling
vestiges of a long dead city, was indeed a frightful place when it came into the
possession of the Pandavas.
Birds and beasts had made it their abode, and
it was infested with thieves and wicked men. Krishna and Arjuna resolved to set fire to
the forest and construct a new city in its place.
A saranga bird was living there with its four
fledgelings. The male bird was pleasantly roaming about in the forest with another female
bird neglecting wife and children. The mother bird looked after its young ones.
As the forest was set on fire as comman- ded by
Krishna and Arjuna and the fire spread in all directions, doing its destructive work, the
worried mother bird began to lament:
'The fire is coming nearer and nearer burning
everything, and soon it will be here and destroy us. All forest creatures are in despair
and the air is full of the agonising crash of falling trees. Poor wingless babies! You
will become a prey to the fire. What shall I do?