The Mat: a Rhyming Love Poem about Yoga.
In 2016, I wrote the first draft of this poem.
Now, a whole two years later, I stumbled upon it once again. It immediately pulled me in and grabbed my attention.
I dropped everything: the half done laundry sitting on the bed, the dishes waiting to be washed in the sink, the vegetables I was in the middle of cutting. It all stopped for this. The words just flowed out of me—my heart was beating out of my chest, setting the tempo and pace for this piece of writing.
I added a few lines, changed some wording, and grew in many ways as I expanded on what I had learned just a couple of years ago. This practice continues to bring me deeper and deeper to my truest nature. It has become less about the asana (poses) and more about the transformation that happens when the asana practice is over.
While resting in savasana (final rest), after the body has opened and the mind has settled, there is a real stillness that can be experienced—one free of circular thinking, worries, and fears. For me, this is true freedom.
Writing this poem, both then and now, reminds me how important it is to take action when inspiration takes hold and how easily everything can flow and come together when we connect with our big, grateful hearts. Namaste.
I om and I can feel the universe inside
The connection between us is quantified
I salute the sun for it teaches me how
to flow with spirit, inviting me to “now”
Stretching and reaching my body open
Healing myself from when I was broken
I feel my muscles work with determination
My being resists residing in stagnation
I balance with engagement and focus
Then proceed to open my heart in locust
My back bends to keep my spine free
From the years that have conditioned me
To feel less than my truest self
Self-love is worth more than any wealth
My core burns with magnificent strength
Lighting the space with grace and length
Grounding into the earth, my feet root
Soaking in the labor and its fruit
Hanumanasana summons my attention
Hips opening, reminded of all creation
Inversions help me find new perspective
And keep me away from always being “detective”
I twist my body to wring out the old
Breathing and cleansing before I unfold
Savasana calls and asks me to rest
I place my hands on my heart beating through my chest
I observe the thoughts that come and go
Without judgement, release them and know:
“You are not what you think, you are so much more”
Cells vibrating with aliveness, my vessel rests on the floor
Step back, my body radiates a magnificent glow
Vitality and love abound when I tap into this flow
Yoga is my medicine
To assist in the reveal of what is genuine
Layers and layers still to uncover
Drop the self-doubt, become your own biggest lover
Over and over we practice and meet
The mat—sacred space beneath two feet
Author: Alexis Anderson
Image: Author’s own
Editor: Nicole Cameron
About the author: Alexis Anderson began practicing yoga regularly when she became pregnant with her first child in 2012. But her infatuation with yoga, meditation, and other Eastern teaching began way before then, in middle school. Alexis began teaching yoga at the age of 18 and has continued to study and devote herself to her practice. Alexis is currently studying under Susan Bass at The Saraswati Institute Of Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy in Portland, Oregon, and is scheduled to graduate with her 300-hour RYT certificate in September of 2018. Follow her on her blog, Instagram, and Facebook.
Browse Front PageShare Your Idea