THE ABSOLUTE By Mallikarjun RakalaThis book is a collection of Sri Chinmoy’s poems selected from his entire body of poetic work that spans over six decades. He started writing poetry from the age of thirteen and continued writing even in the last year of his life. As a child he was thoroughly trained in the craft of the poetic art. All his early poems were written from within the poetic restraints of meter and rhyme. Only later in his poetic career he wrote in free verse. Speaking of his poetry, Sri Chinmoy said, “Throughout my poetry-journey, my poetry-tree has cherished various branches: philosophy, prayer, religion, spirituality, my love of Nature’s beauty, my love of word-making, which the English language indulgently allows me to explore, and my abiding love, concern and hope for this world of ours.” Because of the shear originality, sincerity, honesty, and truth in his poems, the cadences of Sri Chinmoy’s poetry, like the poet himself, will travel through time for centuries and centuries to come offering hope, strength and salvation to many an earnest traveler in his or her journey through life.

 

The question arises, can anyone write poems like Sri Chinmoy? The answer is — it has to be another Sri Chinmoy — a poetic genius, for Harold Bloom asserts, “Talent cannot originate, genius must.” So what is the genius in Sri Chinmoy’s poetry? The genius in Sri Chinmoy’s poetry is the song of his soul. You see the purity, innocence and the power of this song percolating all through his poetry. You hear this song in the sound of the language he uses. For instance, consider these lines in one of his aphorisms:

 

His heart is a most powerful

And soothing murmur

Of his soul’s dream river.

 

When reading Sri Chinmoy’s poems in his poetry books like My Flute — a collection of 90 poems, My First Friendship With the Muse – a collection of 58 poems, From the Source to the Source — a two-volume collection of 401 poems, The Dance of Life — a 20-volume collection of 1,000 poems, just to name a few, one is astounded by the depth, originality, diversity and the superb use of the craft — the powerful expression, in the poems.

 

Consider the following poem:

 

GOLDEN MYSTIC SUN

 

The descending fire descends;

The ascending fire ascends.

The smile of Light

Watches their tasks divine

From across the empty space

Where the hands of ether

Salute the golden mystic sun.

– Sri Chinmoy

 

This poem is taken from Sri Chinmoy’s poetry book ‘The Wings of Light”, Part 12, New York: Agni Press, 1974 is included in the book ‘THE ABSOLUTE’ – Collected poems of Sri Chinmoy. The vision, the thought and the images used in this poem are absolutely original and unique, as if coming from another higher world of esthetic beauty and charm.

– Mallikarjun Rakala

 

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THE ABSOLUTE : Mallikarjun Rakala

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