The hallowed day of Poson... | Sunday Observer

The hallowed day of Poson...

It was the year of 323 B.C.
The morning was bright and clear;
A command rang through the palace,
That the monarch of the kingdom desire
A retinue to be ready, to venture out
On an expedition, hunting in the woods.
Leaving behind the palace,
The King was contented to see
His subjects busy with their occupations,
Paying obeisance as he passed by.
Riding through the verdant jungle,
The king saw herds of deer running after a prey;
He pulled the reins of the horse,
Got ready to unleash a deadly arrow,
While the retinue eagerly waited
To applaud the master’s archery.
With the gusts of wind and rustle of leaves
An echo of a voice from a distant point
Reached the King’s ear
“Tissa” loud and clear.
The awe-struck king remained unmoved.
“Who could it be calling me by my name?”
On the peak of the Mount Missaka,
Stood a figure swathed in a golden robe
Signalling him to stop.
The encounter between the King and the Arahant Mahinda
And the first discourse on Buddha’s teaching
Ensued in ushering in an era of spiritual development.
Art, architecture, literature and sculpture
Began to emerge and flower under royal patronage.
Buddhists commemorate the hallowed day of Poson
As a day of great historical and religious significance.

- Sunila Nanayakkara