Monsoon Mist a sample of Elizabeth's writing
Written by Su Fen Chung
"A must have in one's devotional library. is Heart of Vrindavana Vol.1 -8 in Praise of Sri Sri Radha Krishna" a unique collection of poems written by longtime SRF devotee Elizabeth Wilson. Elizabeth has been writing since the age of five when she penned her first short story about an orphaned koala bear.
A Canadian citizen and Los Angeles resident, Elizabeth joined SRF in 1973 and remains tremendously enthusiastic about the teachings of her Guru Paramahansa Yogananda and the SRF/YSS organization he founded.
Although physically challenged by post polio and a recent hip replacement, Elizabeth still was inspired to try her hand a devotional poetry, no mean feat at the best of times. But she prayed to Master for guidance and inspiration, rose early to do her morning program and found guidance and words flowing particularly at the hours of three and four from Guru and God.
"It's just so quiet and the energy is palatable- it seems one can more easily establish a fine attunement at that time with Gurus, at least I can, than during the busy haste and noise of the day."
Elizabeth has been a writer for as long as she can remember. Currently she is a member of the Greater Los Angeles Press Club and IWOSC, the Independent Writers of Southern California. She began writing professionally at the age of fifteen with a column Small Talk penned in Canada's Ottawa Journal and by her twenties she had relocated to Los Angeles and was writing articles on film esthetics for the UCLA film student body and Harper and Collins Publication Masterpieces of Cinema.
She then worked in Hollywood as a literary and artist's agent and manager a task she continues sparingly even today. "It is so rewarding," says Elizabeth to help another writer get on their feet in this business. It's tough and everyone needs a mentor and helper so I enjoy this tremendously although now I only take four clients at a time - I just can't give more the attention I feel their work merits"
Some of her clients have gone on to write movies and plays; others have turned to desk top publishing or computer website writing. None have quit. "Master even sent me a client who has successfully written some music and formed a group called Glass Onions which hit 15 on the rhythm and blues chart."
When asked about her own writing and poetry, Elizabeth becomes more reserved. "I wrote this battery of free verse poetry about the love past times of Radha and Krishna at white heat. Sometimes, I work that way, many writers do; at other times, I have to be intensely organized such as I am now with the idea for a new novella Gurudeva has inspired within me. It is about crossed lovers -a Brahmin boy and a British girl who fall passionately in love. IT is set in India just before partition." It's entitled Shefali Flowers and time line for it's completion and publication is May 2,000.
Elizabeth's poetry Heart of Vrindavana Volume One - In Praise Of Sri Sri Radha Krishna and Volume Two in the series, Red Lotus, show a deep spiritual maturity and understanding. Her love of Gurus and her particular interest in Lord Krishna has resulted in stunning poetry which simply resounds with spiritual and devotional sentiments in appreciation of the divine couple echoing the love of Sri Krishna Caitanya Mahaprabhu, a fifteenth century saint and devotee and the great incarnation of love of God who promulgated the chanting of the Holy Names of God as a means of salvation. " Master is reputed to have said," Elizabeth adds, "that chanting is half the battle."
The poems themselves though coming in the same tradition of devotional songs and poetry created by great saints and mystics such as Tukarama, Jayadeva (the Gita Govinda) and Mirabai, reflect Elizabeth's modern slant.
Instead of tradition poetic meters and verses, the poems are expressed in flowing free verse that speaks to the heart and moves the soul. Passionately written, in deep contemplation for the sacred and wonderful pastimes of the dark lord, Krishna, the poems definitely inspire one's heart towards the path of God.
Elizabeth also imports custom marble statues of India demigods and particularly excellent Jaipur marble carvings of Sri Sir Radha and Krishna, and does wearable devotional art on sweatshirts. Next year she hopes to keep her website and improve on it while writing her Master's Thesis on the Filmography of director Sir David Lean who gave us such notable pictures as Bridge on the River Kwai, Doctor Zhivago, Ryan's Daughter and A Passage to India, perhaps a film many devotees may recall.
The theme of my thesis is "Towards a metaphysical perspective," a point of view Sir David Lean himself endorsed before he passed away shortly before we were to make the Joseph Conrad adaptation " Nostromo".
"Divine Mother and Master had other plans", says Elizabeth. "I could never have imagined Master helping me write devotional poetry and I just love to write it and see the joy come across a devotee's radiant face or read a sweet note penned by someone who found the website and has read a poem and being singularly touched."
I would welcome any interested devotees who might wish to buy the poetry volumes. The beautifully illustrated books are twelve dollars which includes the postage in USA.
-Sufen Chung and Elizabeth Wilson
7095 Hollywood Blvd.
Hollywood, CA 90028-8903
Note: The poems are written under my pseudonym Lajjah Priya devi dasi. I didn't want any devotees to get to the site and wonder - "but where's Elizabeth?"