"The search after Truth is the one thing by which the shape of human life should be determined.

Genuine desire itself opens the road to fulfilment."    

Sri Anandamayi Ma


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I, Lalla - Poems of Lal Ded - Part 3

I saw a sage starving to death,

a leaf floating to earth on a winter breeze.

I saw a fool beating his cook.

And now I am waiting for someone to cut

the love-cord that keeps me tied to this crazy world.

Now I see a flowing stream,

now a flood that's drowned all bridges,

now I see a bush flaming with flowers,

now a skeleton of twigs.

My soul is an elephant, an elephant that trumpets for food

every hour on the hour.

Out of a thousand, out of a hundred thousand, only one survives.

Thank God, or they'd have trampled all creation,

these hungry tuskers.

Now I see a blazing hearth,

now neither smoke nor fire,

now I see the mother of five princes,

now just the aunt of the potter's wife.

from I, Lalla - Poems of Lal Ded translated from the Kashmiri by Ranjit Hoskote