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poem: in the moment

hot damp august night
workweek thoughts, eyes closed, awake
three . . . deep . . . breaths

Everyone’s been there, I bet. Busy work week, getting behind on home projects, sure there’s something important to do you’ve forgotten. Your mind is everywhere but where you are, right now. Combine that with an unseasonable heat wave, a humid night, sleeping on top of the sheets, window open for any hint of breeze bringing in the distracting sounds of traffic in the distance . . .

The answer: three deep breaths. Eyes closed, breathe in deeply, slowly, fully, intentionally, then out slowly. Pause just a moment, then breathe in deeply, slowly, fully, intentionally. Focus on the physical feeling of the air in your nose, the slight little sound, the way your chest expands and your shoulders separate slightly. Then breathe out slowly and pause for just a moment. Breath in deeply, slowly, fully, intentionally. Focus on your breath, feel the air brush the back of your throat and your windpipe, feel it fill your lungs. Then breathe out slowly and pause for a moment.

In the moments to come, your normal, unregulated breath will resume, but slower and more full than before. Stay in the moment, focus on your breath and the sensations your body makes as it breathes. Be where you are right now. Tomorrow will come soon enough.

I linked this poem to the readwritepoem blog, where there is a weekly poetry “prompt” inviting people to submit poems on a new theme each week. This week’s theme was to write a poem about being in the moment. (You can read other poets’ submissions on the theme at the blog too.)

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  1. August 19, 2008 at 1:53 am

    Your poem is very much in the moment. Deep breathing is good advice. I should do it more often.

  2. August 19, 2008 at 5:13 am

    As a teacher I have a hard time falling asleep in the summer when I’m not so busy. I’ll have to try this method! Thanks.

    I like the way you spaced the last line, like the dots (breaths)are syllables!

  3. August 19, 2008 at 12:34 pm

    very good advice…

  4. August 19, 2008 at 1:51 pm

    Yes, breathing can be a really centring thing. I really missed that power when, for me, breathing became emotionally fraught through a combination of unpleasant meditation experiences and pressure to sing properly. I was very glad when I managed to win back my breath for myself!

  5. August 19, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    I like this. It contains a lot of seeming contradictions that don’t hit me over the head. There’s a good feeling to it.

  6. August 21, 2008 at 9:02 pm

    This is what I call perfect moment. Very momentous!

    plunging in the tunneled abyss

  7. UL
    August 22, 2008 at 12:33 pm

    meditation explained so beautifully, breathe in, breathe out and we become the moment and the moment becomes us. Very beautifully stated, thanks for stopping by, and in turn you brought me here.. very nice space you have going. I am going to read some more of your thoughts….thank you.

  8. Katie
    August 24, 2008 at 11:17 pm

    Three deep breaths. That’s a great mantra!

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