most beautiful poem in the world
I came to know Kalpana Ambrose through her writing on the Web. I
found them very rhythmical and sensitive. Especially her Sinhala ones I
found incredibly delicate. So in the end Kalpana became a facebook
friend. One day, whiling away at the FB I came across her status update.
It did seem and sound familiar, but I could not exactly recall where
I’ve seen it before. Normally I am not so concerned about grammar
issues, but I replicate it here with a small grammar amendment. Just
check if you have seen or heard the following somewhere:The most
beautiful poemin the world is not written so far.It’s hidden there in
heart of someone who is not a poet at alla A serious poetry reader
gathers something from these lines, I know. But these lines, at the same
time, give out several hints to our contemplation. It reminds me two
The first one is a famous Hans Christian Anderson fairytale where
doctors advise a sick king to wear a shirt of a happy man. If you don’t
know the story, the king fell ill with no cure. So the king had
aristocrat offers from all over country. But none of them was eligible.
They however were not qualified, because they were not
men. Royal courtiers had a hard time locating the happiest on earth.
Finally they came across someone almost haphazardly. That someone was a
shepherd really a down and out. His income went to mouth straight from
hand. He couldn’t even afford a shirt to put on. But he is the only one
who could frankly claim to be the happiest on earth. Courtiers of course
could see he was hassle-free all the time with less worries and no high
ambitions. The second story is a little even in a Sinhala translation I
read. I must have mentioned about it earlier too. It’s Vibhootibhooshana
Bandyopadya’s Aranakata Pem Benda (translated from Bengali into Sinhala
by Chintha Lakshmi Sinha Arachchi) where a man sitting for hours gazing
at a streamlet. The man is poor in the sense he is left starved for
days. But still for the narrator this man seems to be at his tranquil
holding gaze. It should be his happiness.
While reading Kalpana’s status update, memories of these two tales
crawled, as if it’s a secret mission, to my mind. For some reason I was
already familiar with those lines. There are times I wonder how can only
some people be called poets. In a way I think all of us are poets. Only
that poets know how to manipulate language to suit their spontaneous
feelings. But you should have the right feeling for that. That means you
have to be a philosopher too. Philosopher is not someone with a long
beard. In fact you cannot make out a philosopher, just the way you
cannot know an Arahath. One thing is sure, everyone of us is not a
philosopher. And every poet and lyricist is not a philosopher either. So
don’t ask me who are philosophers and who are not, I don’t know. I can’t
draw a line and define what philosophy is and who a philosopher is. But
I can tell you what is my thought of a philosopher. A philosopher may
not know how to read.
A philosopher may not be well versed in a particular subject. A
philosopher may not be able to say his thought in a high flown or simple
convincing way. A philosopher may be considered insane. A philosopher
can be dumb and stupid.
Anderson’s character obviously doesn’t know his letters; so does
Bhandopadya’s character. They cannot be happy the way we see. But they
are happy, why? There you are. See, doesn’t Buddhism-only Buddhism, I
think - offer an answer? Remember that conversation between Dhaniya
Gopallawa and the Buddha. Dhaniya Gopallawa had all his wealth, this and
that, while the Buddha had only a few belongings. But the Buddha was
happier because he had no fear of losing them. Not only material things,
but also ideologies. More we study ideologies, more we get entangled in
them. Even a standard poet, if he is to write beautiful poetry, he has
to study many kinds of poetry in addition to his born talent. This
indirectly makes him entangled in a self-made net. So someone unfamiliar
with all those ideologies may write down the best poem, because his mind
is like crystal clear water.
Actually speaking, you don’t have to read thousands of those ‘words
of comfort’. However much you read, they cannot make you happy. It’s
something you have to cultivate on your own giving up worries. I find it
a little bit hard to explain this. But let me give it a try. If you can
enjoy artistic beauty of a nude figure without letting unwanted thoughts
disrupt your peace of mind. If you can enjoy hustle and bustle of a town
just like the way you enjoy the cheep or a chirp of a bird in forest.
It’s entirely the way you see things. When you are devoid of so many
things, even hustle and bustle will be soothing music.
You don’t have to be a man of letters to breathe in that. In fact
knowledge and information spoil happiness unless you are philosophical
enough to handle that. I picture that poor shepherds in Anderson
fairytale. I picture that ragged man in Bhattacharya’s novel. They take
that respite somewhere in the back of my mind. They seem to confess or
blurt out something. I know pretty well they cannot put their catharsis
into words, because that’s hidden in their hearts. And Kalpana is right
because they are not poets at all.