Enthrallment

In asana, breath moves through my chest, a bellows
igniting a bright fire to course through my body.
The Yoga Sutras refined my understanding of this.
Vikalpaḥ is the imagination of metaphor, sleek,
and it is here where the fire inside of me blooms.
Asana prepares the body through movement to turn
inward and touch the deep-radiating light.
I think of those stone holders for tea lights
carved with stars, moons, and shooting meteors,
only in my mind’s eye this is made of paper.
It is simultaneously yoga, the images on the cave
wall coming into focus, and the mirror held up
by the Titans to entrance Zagreus, whom they kill.
In asana, when I prepare my body and breathe deep,
I wonder if yoga is compatible with this imagined
world that I hold as an image against my mind’s eye
because the fire that illumines it and brings it
into focus is the center of my being turned outward —
at this garden of delights that absorb my attention.
The vividness is so strong sometimes that I drown,
engrossed in light more deeply than I am in meditation.
Is this yoga, then, to move my body in preparation
for a work that I have sworn to gods I will do,
for which I have given offerings of incense and time,
something that has brought me through highs and lows,
space to make theogony and mythology for gods I love?
It is something like yoga, to prepare in asana,
to entrance oneself in images moving through the soul.
It is something like yoga, to breathe into this fire,
controlling it just enough to keep paper from curling.

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