Vipassana Retreat

In the meditation hall
The Supremes keep singing
Remove This Doubt From My Mind
It seems to be triggered
by the teacher asking us
to reel in the wandering mind,
the chattering mind,
the monkey mind leaping
from thought to thought.

The knots of the wood-
panelled bathroom have been
encircled by gouging
with some sharp instrument,
revealing alien faces
and innumerable eyes
I think I am the queen
of wandering minds.
I am distracted
by the juicy concert
of my neighbour’s belly.
I dream in poems and
I read inspirational quotes
from tea boxes in the dining hall,
and read the labels
of every toiletry
and cleaning product
in the bathrooms.

The man in bed number five
is trying to communicate with me
I can tell by the way
he cut off his hair.
I want to kiss the top of his head
the man in bed number two
talks in his sleep
the man in bed number four
the man in bed number three
and someone in the next room
screams at night,
waking me before four a.m.

Someone has written HELP
with broken stick
on the walking trail
next to the woods
meanwhile the teacher disappears
outside, who knows where,
as a wasp circles my head
then descends to crawl across my face,
it lingers on my eyelid.
I sit perfectly still
it does not sting me
I don’t move I breathe,
for the first time
in many years
on the edge of terror.

4 Replies to “Vipassana Retreat”

  1. I started out on retreats 23 years ago… this poem touches upon the experience, or rather the way I felt about the experience when I learnt to breath in a conscious way and all the deep rooted material that came to the surface at the same time. It hasn’t become any easier for me but
    … then nothing of value ever is…

  2. Did i experience the cessation of all thinking at any time? No not really, but then it was never my intention. What interests me more is a possibility of original thought, more so an unconditioned thought, in a quirky. not together sort of way.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s