The Power of a Photograph
In the last couple of years
I’ve read whatever books I could get my hands on
Whose subject is Sri Anandamayi Ma
(Her parents gave her the name
Which means “One of Taintless Beauty”)
Some say this Bengali woman
Was a saint
Others assert a guru
Still others disagree
She was undoubtedly an avatar
No, no, she was the Divine Mother herself
But this stood out to me from one of those books
A European happened to come across
A photo of her
And was so taken by it
So awakened by it
So lured by it
That in no time
She dropped everything
And left behind her middle-class life
And found herself on a plane to India
For if a mere photo had that kind of power
What would it be like to see Ma face to face?
After Hamlet Beheld Sri Anandamayi Ma
What an uncanny phenomenon is this being!
How penetrating in perception!
How infinite in faculties!
In form and moving how joyous and marvelous!
In action how like an angel!
In apprehension how like a goddess!
The beauty of the world!
The paragon of the sages!—
May I remain near this quintessence of bliss!