Like Words Together Reflections from the deep end of Practice.


Unexpectedly Free Afternoon

It has been generally quiet today. Wasn't sure how the day would go after I woke up at 5AM disoriented and aching. I got back to sleep, Phoebe tried to help by curling up next to me again and woke up later than I'd expected when my Mom phoned at 9AM.

She sounded terrible, had been coughing a lot, and there were 3 inches of snow with more coming down! She said that she thought it would be better if I didn't come out. I told her we'd figure out another time, although it would be very difficult for the next few weeks. I hung up and observed the ache in my sinuses, felt the relief of this cancellation.

Two students showed up to class today and we spent a long time in less poses. Going deeply, taking time for me to work with them on alignment. It felt really good to offer that kind of attention to detail with just two people. I was aware of how enjoyable it was to have the freedom to really focus like that.

With my afternoon suddenly free I took some ibuprofen my still aching head and decided to take a long hot bath, dozing off while I soaked. After I felt that kind of groggy, heaviness I get after a nap. Unfortunately my head didn't feel much better. I washed the dishes and decided to go ahead and make stew even though I'm alone. I've been making a stew or soup most Sundays but didn't think I would today with the plans to see Mom.

AM rang up while I was getting started. We chatted for a little bit about his experience at the Beginner's Mind retreat over the weekend. It was a good experience, made him see that trying to go into residency at Great Vow may not be the best choice for him right now.

After getting off the phone I decided to just be with the silence this afternoon, resisting the urge to put on music or NPR. I'm going to see M. Ward at the Aladdin later this evening and it seemed like a good idea to spend the afternoon being mindful in the quiet. I have come to really appreciate preparing food in silence, just being fully present for the act of cooking.

The apartment smells wonderful. I'm writing early on account of the concert and will wrap up in order to eat some of the stew. I miss CK a lot and am very grateful she will be back tomorrow afternoon. I sent her a message about the stew, something about having made it so she'll be able to enjoy it tomorrow feels comforting.

Stew Meditation

Under my hand skin
Comes off in
Long brown strips
Revealing jewel
Orange flesh.
The knife moves,
planes, strips, cubes.
The hands set aside,
Move to the next
To be made into
Small pieces.
Then into a
Humble pot.
The order a
Kind of ritual.
First lilies to
Soften, grow fragrant.
Then roots,
Stalks, fruits.
Water rushing
In to give depth.
Then sitting while
All ingredients join
Together in silence
And heat.

I am nourished
By the act
And result.

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  1. Nice blog. Do you know about these yoga books?

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