Songs of the Body

This was written as a tribute, ode and a love poem to the spiritual practice of hatha yoga (the yoga of asanas, or poses). Though I can no longer have as intense of a physical practice as I once did, due to a chronic cracking joint condition, my love of yoga has certainly transcended my body and become part of my day to day, minute to minute, breath to breath existence.

The body sings many songs

But only for those

who’ve learned to listen.

Listen.

Listen deeply.

Listen, and you just may hear

The way the back bends

and how the heart extends

opening fully, as wide as the sky,

can you hear its beautiful melody?

Young Salaam Balaak Trust students opening their hearts in Chakrasana near New Delhi’s Pahar Gang Train Station

Listen.

Listen deeply.

Listen, and you just may hear

The sweetness of surrender

closing oneself, inside oneself

Folding forward, head humbly bent

onto the knees, is what is meant

Listen.

Listen deeply.

Listen, and you just may hear

The ocean of devotion

Tremendous

letting go

Of emotion.

Listen.

Listen deeply.

Listen, and you just may hear

The absence of fear

that is near

when you see someone

who stands

on their hands.

Listen.

Listen deeply.

Listen, and you just may hear

The silence that

survives

in the stillness

of each song.

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4 Comments

    • catherinetodd says:

      One of the best parts was your mention of not being able to do as “intense” a yoga discipline as before, but still continuing. Since I injured by back, I stopped all exercise and thought I couldn’t do any more. That’s why I am so thrilled to find out I still can, and sometimes I only have to BREATHE.

      Gracias, amiga! Namaste.

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