The first śloka
Valmiki was going to the river Ganga for his daily ablutions। A disciple by the name Bharadwaja was carrying his clothes. On the way, they came across the Tamasa Stream. Looking at the stream, Valmiki said to his disciple, "Look, how clear is this water, like the mind of a good man! I will bathe here today." When he was looking for a suitable place to step into the stream, he heard sweet chirping of birds. Looking up, he saw two birds flying together. Valmiki felt very pleased on seeing the happy bird couple. Suddenly, one of the birds fell down hit by an arrow; it was the male bird. Seeing the wounded one, its mate screamed in agony. Valmiki's heart melted at this pitiful sight. He looked around to find out who had shot the bird. He saw a hunter with a bow and arrows, nearby. The hunter had shot the bird for food. Valmiki became very angry. His lips opened and he uttered the following words: Bharadwaja was one of the great sages (rishis) whose accomplishments are detailed in the Puranas. ...
mAnishAda pratishTAtum samagah ssAshvatIssamAh
yat krouncha mithunAdEkam sokam avadhIm kAma mOhitam
"You who have killed one of the birds engaged in the act of love,
thus, may you not yourself live long!"
This was the first shloka in Sanskrit literature. Later Valmiki composed entire Ramayana due to the blessings of Lord Brahma in the same meter that issued forth from him as a sloka. Thus this sloka is revered as the "first sloka" in Hindu literature. Valmiki is revered as the first poet, or Adi Kavi,