I was sitting tonight
Meditating that is.

My gaze was low
My outbreath dissolving thoughts.
There was discipline and precision
And I secretly congratulated myself.

And then I placed my hand on my heart
Out of habit surely.

But with that simple gesture,
Fear, something close to panic even,
A sense of struggle, confusion,
Conflicting emotions
Washed over the innocent posturing
Of the good meditator.

I felt how fragile I was
How small and groundless
How wide and chaotic
Was the world lying under my wrinkled hand.

It felt so profoundly humane
To let it all be
And to let go of me.



I am not sure
What it means
To be you
Or me
Or anyone.

I see so many faces
Turned towards me
The teacher
Who knows
And really doubts
And hesitates
With the careful steps
Of the beginner
All over again
Every single time.

I know
But only what’s its like
To be human
To be lost for words
To be scared
To hear the echo of my own voice
And to not know
Not know anything
At all.

The uncertainty of it all
Laughs in the background
Of the classroom

Sometimes I am them and you
To laugh along with it.

I barely smile
The tired smile
Of the one who tried
Too hard
To be.


Nouvel an tibétain,
Je contemple ma mort
Et c’est ma vie qui bat.
 Mon corps est posé dans le bleu du ciel,
J’ai le coeur juste sous les yeux.
Leurs visagent se dessinent
Un crâne lisse, si familier,
Et les traits apaisés d’un sourire endormi.