Her rich linen swayed in vogue with the breeze.
Her precious jewels reflected the rays of the setting sun.
Her anklets rippled in tune with the waves of the flowing river.
Yet lonely was she as she strolled by the river
With a mind so stressed, eyes so red with held up tears,
And a heart so swelled with memories so harsh.
The sage in a distance was much in contrast,
Wrapped in an attire so plain & coarse bereft of any décor
With a face so serene that expressed pure bliss.
Simple on sight meditating for long,
Under the bulky Bodhi tree.
Even in contrast, they had a similarity,
In one cause, that both dwelled,
In their own realms of thoughts,
So deep and drowned that neither was aware
Of changes around & outside their frame.
With a sound so strong the thunder stuck,
And brought with it the first drops of the rain,
That caressed her glazing skin.
Though slowly she looked up,
And saw the sage meditating peacefully,
Under the bulky Bodhi tree.
He lacked everything she owned,
Yet he was happy, while she withered in grief.
Though not in haste, she walked up to him,
For what she wanted wasn’t a shelter from the drizzle,
But to know the truth, behind his smile and serenity.
As her steps progressed, the drizzle stopped.
Yet she stood there, gazing at the sage,
Taking in the bliss that he alone felt.
Time flew by, and the duo remained,
As unmoved as carved up sculptures.
The sage opened his eyes with the same smile,
On his age rugged lips.
On seeing her, raised his palms in gesture of bless.
With a bowed head and folded hands,
In gesture of respect, she asked the sage in a trembling voice.
‘Oh holy one! Tell me what is the secret of this bliss you enjoy?
You lack everything I own,
Yet you are happy as I wither in grief.’
With an extended moment of pause,
The sage replied, ‘My dear child,
What you think you own are only those,
That I had never wished for.
Hence I never felt the lack.
Whereas I hold what you seek,
But never knew, what you really wanted.
You are now nothing, but a troubled mind decked up.
Disown your troubles, lighten your soul,
Listen to the voice within,
For what you seek exists within you.’
Her lips trembled as she tried to speaks,
Her held up tears rolled down her rosy cheeks,
As she kneeled and whispered.
‘Too many wounds, too many tales,
Enlighten me O Sage ! How can I unburden my soul,
And let these emotions flow?’
The words of the sage were as tranquil as before.
‘Emotions false and dark, are all so fierce,
That if held within, might burn our souls.
Thence let it not puddle within you,
As wounded memories to bring back tears when alone.’
Brushing aside her tears, she asked the sage,
‘Tell me Oh holy one! If not to be expressed,
If not to be held within, what could one do,
When emotion so strong swells up our heart?’
The words the sage spoke were soft yet firm,
‘My child ! The best way to heal is forgiveness.
Forget your foes, forgive their sins.
Wander no more, the peace you seek,
The bliss you wish, the smile you deserve is all within you.’
She could no longer feel the tears roll down.
Her heart felt light & a shadow of a smile crossed her lips.
The sage could see a sparkle in her eyes,
Mirrored from his own as she heard him quote.
‘So does the truth run, that joys of life are too small to find,
For they lie within those who seek.
So seek your joys not somewhere far, but within our souls
For what we seek is all within us.’