Mirror, Mirror


              If I were a galaxy in outer space
              and wanted to find my reflection,
              a mirror I’d seek so to peek at my face
              while engaging in introspection.

              Suppose I was millions of light-years away
              in a constellation called Maiden
              or Virgo, to use its correct sobriquet,
              with a twin doppelgänger laden.

              Might I query, ‘Oh mirror high in the sky,
              midst linked arms and blueish trail flowing,
              do you think my double is fairer than I?
              What image is that you are showing?

              ‘Is it beauty you see gazing back at me,
              mythopoeic in pondering mood? —
              Notwithstanding what seems to be harmony,
              something’s wrong with that calm attitude.

              The peaceable aspect is masking a stage
              of an astronomic collision
              that began in an erstwhile earlier age
              and will cause extensive revision.

              In infrared, NGC five three three one
              is a hundred billion times brighter,
              it’s said, than the luminousness of the Sun,
              (hard to grasp for a starlit writer).

              A mirror speaks not, unless it is magic,
              plus envisioning likenesses flipped.
              What will that merger be, placid or tragic
              in the redrafted galactic script?

              The picture of two spirals interacting,
              during a junction’s coming to pass,
              reveals the duo each other impacting,
              thus to resemble a looking glass.

              In the sequel by Carroll to Wonderland,
              Alice climbs through to the other side
              of the mirror, where she meets with peril and
              Tweedledum and Tweedledee abide.

              Yet our surroundings behave as reflector
              much like the Moon with the tidal ebb.
              Hence is futurity glimpsed as a specter
              hither and thither weaving its web…

              Humans cast shadows in all causal matters
              touching on Nature’s balance on Earth
              fragilely wrought as a mirror that shatters.
              Oh may we waken to life’s true worth!

              ~ Harley White

* * * * * * * * * *

Inspiration for the poem was from image and article about NGC 5331...

Further inspiration derived from the teachings and writings of Nichiren Daishōnin…

“So it is the same with whom we refer to as sentient beings and those whom we refer to as Buddhas. When a person is bewildered, he is spoken of as being a sentient being. But, on his enlightenment (satori), he is then called a Buddha.

“For instance, a tarnished metal mirror, when polished up, will shine like a jewel. When the mind is bewildered, even for one instant, by its fundamental unenlightenment, it immediately becomes like a mirror that has been neglected. But, once it is polished, it will attain the brilliance of the true suchness of the Dharma nature. You must give rise to a deep mind of faith, in order to polish this mirror mornings and evenings. How should you polish it then? This is done just by reverently reciting Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō, which is what this polishing is called.”

~ Nichiren Daishōnin (1255)

From ~ Treatise on Becoming a Buddha in a Single Lifetime (being updated online)

Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō means to devote our lives to and found them on (Nam[u]) the Utterness of the Dharma (Myōhō) [entirety of existence, enlightenment and unenlightenment] permeated by the underlying white lotus flower-like mechanism of the interdependence of cause, concomitancy and effect (Renge) in its whereabouts of the ten [psychological] realms of dharmas [which is every possible psychological wavelength] (Kyō).

The reason that we continually recite Nam Myōhō Renge Kyō

NGC 5331

Credit: NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)-ESA/Hubble Collaboration and A. Evans (University of Virginia, Charlottesville/NRAO/Stony Brook University)

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