21 June 2017

The Chair is for Balance

Seniors in Silver Sneaker Yoga sit
in chairs to pay attention to breathing—
inhale / exhale.  The instructor coaches
to take our time, but she rushes and we
attempt to keep up.

Seniors in Silver Sneaker Yoga sit
in chairs to raise our arms on an inhale
and float them down on an exhale—
mimicking the instructor’s pace and eyes
closed and yet hurried.

Some, familiar with this instructor, can
anticipate her moves, music and moods,
others half smile, step back and modify
her pace to suit their own inner rhythm
slow, slowing, peaceful.

I succumb to Silver Sneaker Yoga
until I note the simple word “yoga”
means “union,” which is not quite so simple.
At home, I move a chair onto my deck
to attempt to breathe

in air beyond the class, and today two
morning doves join me. We take in tree tops—
white and scots pine, catalpa and cherry—
and we forget to count.  The doves take off.
I relax in joy.



For Sumana's 

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Yoga




My blog poems are rough drafts.   
Please respect my copyright. 
© 2017 Susan L. Chast



17 comments:

gillena cox said...

Luv the contrast of the formal class to the intuitive union of you and nature

Much love...

indybev said...


I think perhaps something in you rebels at being told when to do what ... or perhaps I'm transferring my class experience to you! At any rate, I much enjoyed your poem ... and opt for the deck experience. Our deck is surrounded with trees, and frequent callers are bluejays, cardinals, red-winged blackbirds, house finches, goldfinches; and, on lucky days, the pileated woodpecker comes to call. It all restores my soul.

Sanaa Rizvi said...

Silver sneaker yoga is so intriguing!!❤️ You reminded me of my early days of yoga slipping and falling on the ground while learning to balance.. sigh especially love; "We take in tree tops—white and scots pine, catalpa and cherry—and we forget to count. The doves take off. I relax in joy." Beautifully executed!❤️

Sherry Marr said...

With a rushed yoga instructor (which should be an oxymoron?) I would definitely prefer to porch and the doves.........

Old Egg said...

If she said 'take your time', I would! I like the idea of sitting in chairs to exercise that would be better for my back. Loved the last verse.

Martin Kloess said...

You opened up. Delightful poem and journey.

half-lotus said...

Oh, I love this. Going our own way can always bring more union, than following a hastily built map defined by another. Not only did you find union with yourself, but with the birds and trees within your surroundings. That, to me, speaks of a much higher level of 'union'.

Elizabeth

Sumana Roy said...

This is so captivating Susan, specially the last stanza. Once I read an observation of a famous Indian artist. He was trying to meditate and pray closing his eyes. All on a sudden he opened his eyes and saw the sun rising. Immediately he realized his object of prayer is not only within but this entity also called the world.

Truedessa said...

In the last verse you find your calmness your peace. Did you have sneakers on or were you barefoot?

Samyuktha Jayaprakash said...

I loved it , especially the last stanza! <3
Glad to know that so many ppl hate the breathing on demand part and that I am not alone in this.

annell said...

It is enough.

Khaya Ronkainen said...

Lovely scene; morning doves joining in. This last verse is a joy!

Stacy Lynn Mar said...

this poem flowed just like a slow, relaxing yoga pose.

Panchali said...

Oh, the concluding lines are so so beautiful, Susan.
I was suffering from back pain for quite sometime. Then I started doing chair-yoga and slowly the pain disappeared.
However, for me....Yoga Nidra (yogic sleep) is, by far, the best! Just sayin'.. Smiles,

Mary said...

Ah, yes - senior citizens yoga - some have been doing it for AGES, which is undoubtedly a good thing. Me, I a one who prefers the practice of moving a chair out on the deck and breathing in and out...enjoying nature in and beyond my backyard. That gives more joy than a yoga class! I accept that yoga takes many forms.

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

Ah yes! That's how I like to do it too.

Sara McNulty said...

Forgetting to count is the best way!