The Art of Meditation

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breathe in –
breathing becomes laboured
snagging and catching before the end
 
breathe out –
the breath becomes a cry
caught on a gasp of surprise
 
sit tall –
the spine aches from holding
stories thousands of years old
 
be soft –
i feel not softness but threadbare fragility in
bone and skin that threaten collapse
 
i am falling –
but in the falling, an acute awareness
of what i’ve neglected so long
 
i am restless –
i have within me infinite little pieces
that have been struggling to be heard
 
i am suffering –
i have awakened to brilliant depths
of what it means to be alive and trying
 
i am human –
i will ache and burn as i sit with each one of us
feeling a unity in all our pain but also our triumphs
 
i am learning –
every moment, every breath in, breath out
is a change, a movement, a new leaf born. – TS

To Find You.

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Farther than the
infinite bounds
 
Of our universe,
a plea, a grasp.
 
A walk through
the land between
 
You and I.
I feel parched
 
Here, the sun
has squeezes out
 
From me the
nectar of courage.
 
I retreat, head
cast down, and
 
In the glint of sand
so soft and fluid,
 
An invitation: stay.
But I’ve been here
 
So long. The story
is old. I want to
 
Shake it off now,
leave its formidable
 
Shell here to dry
in the mid-morning
 
Heat. The mirage,
too, tempts me with
 
Her guileless beauty,
for having what I
 
Could never claim
for myself.
 
I do want the very
edges of our known
 
Worlds. Don’t we all?
Where have I been
 
looking? You have
been seeing me this
 
whole time. I am
coming to find you. – TS

Our Many, Our Whole

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My body, my land.

Containing all the stories

all the world in it,

but they are not all my own.

The whole is not simple,

vague or even pure.

We must never stop

listening to how this swirl

this totality morphs into the

particularities of me and

you, as we strive

and struggle to bring ourselves

to the whole with compassion

and understanding.

We are one, yes,

but it doesn’t end here;

we are still so incomplete

in our knowing,

if not our being.

May we always

listen

honour

respect

commit

to the mosaic of our

distinct stories.

Our bodies

Our landscapes,

Our jewels

build something

beautiful together. – TS

Where You Are

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I will meet you where
water turns to air
where body meets shadow

I will meet you where
dawn’s grey brightens
and flatness finds contour

I will come meet you
where our worldly view
bleeds into the horizon

And even sooner,
where it’s all coming
into sweet soft being

I will honour the way
you have found to grow
from bud to blossom

And make yourself known
and seen, and I’ll try to always
meet you where you are.  – TS

 

The Heart of Us

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Our hearts might
have gone to
the moon and back
 
Danced in the light
and free forming
weaves of space,
 
Tied their strings
around the fiery
light of the stars
 
In hopes of some
gentle guidance back
on savage lands,
 
Where dreams that
so scent the night
give way, cruelly even,
 
To what the morning
brings, and we lose
time, even, for shadows.
 
Yet all the while it’s
going on, this tapestry
that is our home,
 
The butterflies teaching
us about fragility and
change at the very
 
Tip of our noses,
the birds that rest and
land and take formation.
 
The trees, always the
trees, with the rocks and
the slippery slopes of moss,
 
And they are not secrets,
even as roots grow inch
by inch below the ground,
 
Reaching our for each other
To make sure each one
is fed, nourished, whole.
 
They are not secrets. They
are the gem inside the fruit,
waiting and regenerative.
 
Doesn’t it sound like our
hearts, beating inside of us,
wherever we go? – TS

Dependence Arising

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They call it negative space,
a void so large it takes on
the qualities of fullness,
it draws attention.
The emptiness of form,
the form of emptiness.
And then we think
of opposites and duality,
of what is supposed to be
and what never is.
And then, maybe,
we come to this:
to the recognition
of a beautiful flower,
small, alone, newly fallen,
still in the grips of her vitality,
upon a pavement marked
with the imprints of those
who have made it,
and the many who have
tread upon is surfaces,
and whichever comes
into the mind first,
they are both us,
and they are both not us,
and we are all
dependent on each other. -TS