Just felt like sharing this poem I wrote after last Thursday’s philosophy class. Barb J. 

Who am I?
Am I
The woman, the wife, the mother.
The worrier,
The worker, the title, the label,
The bank account, the bills?

Am I
The owner, the owned, the named
The nameless?

Am I
The Saint, the sinner, the thief
the beggar, the murderer
Incarcerated?

Am I
The fearful
Dry in mouth and thought?

Be still
Look deeper
Glimpse at the space
Shimmering
Between thoughts
Between labels
Between offender and offended
Watch as it dances ever closer
Merging in the shadow of illusion

If I can be in this place of deep fear
It is no different from this place of deep calm
This place of wondrous joy

I am
The hunter, the hunted
The problem, the solution

I am
Breath, movement, stillness
Birth, death

I am
What I have always been

I am
Just this!

Barb

 

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OASIS

 

not long ago I walked a path

filled with gray and choking dust

dry and dust-filled was too my heart

brimming with judgement and with pride

 

a friend one day told of a place

where heart could rest, where breath could fly

a place of joy and calm and light

a green oasis, filled with life

.

for many days I scoffed at this

until one sleepless and hard night

my sad, defeated empty heart said

you must try to stop this dust,

it clogs your eyes, your throat your might

you must find water, must find light

 

it’s been some years now since that time,

since breath and heart have woken up
surrounded with a silver light

a golden seed a tender heart

are in me now

 

each time the dust cloud fills my eyes

I breathe and stretch toward the light

which lives, I know now, in my heart

 

Joanne Kasprzycki

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CLOSE TO HOME

 

At the end of a hidden winding road

That climbs steeply between redwoods

To a bright Californian mountain

Lies a magical place of joy and tears.

The sun is fierce on the striding meadow

That floats above the wooded valley

Where the Pacific fog flows at daybreak

And each new day spins with possibilities.

 

There I, for the first time, attempt morning yoga,

Bending stiffly but happily between Earth and Sky,

Seeing the beauty of practiced movement,

Earnestly breathing, struggling to follow,

Yet sensing the acceptance of the group,

Growing together through shared experience,

In a week that stirs and challenges me

And fills my heart with new ideas.

 

Back from that place where all seemed possible,

I spend a lazy and dejected week,

And wonder why the people feel so distant

And wonder why the magic was so fleeting.

With routine schedules and small disappointments,

The slow settling dust of ordinariness

Threatens to cover the sparkle

Of the new me I might have found.

 

But the same Californian sun shines here too.

I seek out something to retain inside me,

To remind me how I feel and what I want,

And help the lessons of that place take root.

Impulsively, I sign up at a studio just three blocks away,

With signs for yoga, dance, and other unfamiliar arts,

And I smile to see that this promising treasury

Has been waiting here so close to home.

 

Three years on, I head to Saturday class,

Anticipating the simple wisdom of the opening story.

Ungracefully, I muddle through the movements –

A wobbly warrior, a tin-man trikonasana,

And an unattainable uttanasana –

But more often than not I remember to breathe,

And in my imagination my back is straight,

And I am thankful to have this in my life,

As we inhale to chant:

Om – Close to home.

Om – Close to home.

Om – Close to home.

 

Paul Higgs

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THE YOGA OF WRITING

 

A wall is inside me.

So there must be a door.

I don’t see the door

But I know

If I let go

I will be lead to it.

 

I will be lead

Only when I’m not in charge.

The leader is always there

For anyone who follows.

If I attempt to play her role

I will fail.

 

My arm moves.

I don’t resist.

I don’t push.

I let it go.

Then, my whole body

Forms into Kriyās

And I’m aware

Just aware.

 

Breath comes in.

It goes deep.

And never entirely leaves.

Something remains in me

And becomes me.

With each breath

I am more.

 

I stand up

And walk toward the door.

I pass through it

And through the door within.

I take a piece of paper

And let the pen move,

The yoga of writing.

 

Kurosh Taromi

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