Pure happiness has reference only unto itself. Untarnished by comparison and free from the shadow of relative-ness, it glows and draws blessings, even though it needs no blessing – it is itself a blessing.
I met that happiness in these two figures – a young mother and her son. I was already walking, with my back to them (ironic!!). Suddenly his laughter rang like silver bells. It was so rich, like a hyaku-pasento juice, that my head turned naturally towards the source.
And there she came, crossing the narrow road, with her son on her shoulder. There was the cheerfulness, liveliness in the laughter, now it endowed my senses with one more strand – visually – of the aura that their joy was wearing.
I simply heard myself asking the mother, “Can I take a picture of you?” Graciously, albeit shyly, she agreed. As I showed the picture to them, and as the boy chuckled at his own image before him, I wished that his gift of happiness be this robust even as he grows up, and even after he meets the forces of our society.