Dharma Poem: Go as a River

Circumambulating a golden buddha,
Flowers on the altar,
I breathe in and take a step.
I breathe out and take a second.
Following my breath,
Setting my foot down,
I let go the past,
Say no to the future,
Only Here matters,
Breath and step
And the slow assembly of friends.

A twirly young woman with yellow hair asks:
Am I allowed to dance?
She looks so eager
I breathe in.
Go as a river, I tell her.
Lift one foot and breathe.
Lift a second
And enter the flow of men women young old
Dissolving in the temple.

A look up, thought distracted,
A moment’s boredom,
A sudden longing,
Memory’s stab
Fling us from the river.
With breath and step breath and step we return,
Sloughing off daily sorrow,
Indistinguishable from our fellows–
River, river.

Inside, unseen, like all rivers,
We dance.

© November 9, 2014 Carolyn White