Santosha: Poems of Content


Yesterday, my yoga teacher spoke to us about santosha— contentment in the container of your experience, whatever it may be. It’s one of the niyamas, obligations of a yogi on the eightfold path . It’s an important concept and goal for me.   Three of these poems are old and can be found elsewhere on Puddle Dive, but the last one is brand spanking new.  They are very much a series, but not complete yet.


santosha [contentment] #1

except the silver song of rain–
the arm lifts,
the voice fades.
the dog lifts her head,
then drops it on the pillow.


santosha [contentment] #2
the fear
threat of pain,

the threat fulfilled.
heaps of
rustling plastic
on the hospital bed–
sterile waste, preserving life,
blue wings of the butterfly needle.

real pain
and the urge to cry, to deny,
to pull back and make a fresh start–
when you’re hurting,
there is nothing else–
except the faint possibility
of following your breath
all the way,
creating space,
space to stay.


santosha [contentment] #3

the wheel turns
the dance
is creative,
a riotous spin.


santosha [contentment] #4

on the crest
and in the dips
of a dervish,
what is
right and necessary,
pins and needles–
just ripples
on your pond.

i picked up
the fallen begonia bloom,
edges browning crisp;
a startled ant burrowed
further in.
someone said,
even in death
we serve.
i put it down
and said,
it’s okay.


2 comments on “Santosha: Poems of Content

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