Editor's introduction to first edition

Sri Chinmoy began writing poetry as a youth in India. His intense yearning to know God found spontaneous expression in words and music, first in the subtle, flowing rhythms of his native Bengali and later in the formal eloquence of the English language. Since 1964, Sri Chinmoy has resided in New York. During the last three decades, there has been an efflorescence of creative energy in his life —- not only in poetry and other forms of literature, but also in music and art. In each sphere, he has unfolded the infinite variety of experiences that comprise the spiritual journey: the search for truth and beauty, the struggle to transcend the limitations of the mind, and the ecstatic communion of the human soul with the Divine. A hallmark of the poet's early writings is the gracefulness and dignity of his style, which is reflected in his use of traditional metrical movements and rhymes. In recent years, Sri Chinmoy has evolved another kind of musicality: the flow and focus of his thought is now most often contained within the compass of a single four-line stanza, with nouns yoked together to create a new and powerful vocabulary of the sacred. While many of his poems are written in free verse, Sri Chinmoy's continuing love for the haunting reverberations of rhyme is represented in this selection.