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  • Elaine Fletcher Chapman

Tuesday Morning Practice

A loose paper dropped from my calendar this moment. Wendell Berry’s How To Be A Poet (to remind myself). I begin: Make a place to sit down. / Sit down and be quiet./ You must depend upon/ affection, reading, knowledge,/ skill-more of each/ than you have-inspiration,/ work, growing older, patience, /for patience joins time/ to eternity… You’ve have heard me say Poems save my life everyday. This is the one for today. To remind myself. I need reminded, especially after a week of not-so-divine discontent. The dis-ease of being that has inhabited my body. Ironic after a talk I delivered earlier in the month: Possibilities and the Ease of Being. True Nature. Ground of Being. Radiant Awareness. Words that resonate with ribbles of understanding. A slight drizzle today and air thick with pollen. A lightening storm last night sent the dog into a panic and me pacing the hard wood floor. Not witness but witnessing. Tonight I’m teaching Yoga Nidra: Working with Opposites. Our lives, a study in contrasts. Mary Oliver’s new book of poems, Felicity, arrived this week. Read it cover to cover several times. And reread her first book, No Voyage, published in England in 1965. She begins that book with I wake earlier now that the birds have come. Her new book begins with Things take the time they take. Don’t /worry. I’m saved again. My friend, Julie wrote yesterday that she has close to 800 daffodils blooming in her yard.  Everything takes time. Back to Berry: Breathe with the unconditional breathe/ the unconditional air. The body breathing itself. No striving. No grasping. Just this. Then: Accept what comes from silence./ Make the best you can of it./ Of the little works that come / out of the silence, like prayers,/ make a poem that does not disturb/the silence from which it came. Just now, geese flying over. Heading home. Just now, my husband leaving the house. Just now, the house still. Just now, I am sitting down. Quiet. Just now, open my notebook, locate my pen.

#MaryOliver #Poemssavemylife #WendellBerry #YogaNidra

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