Solstice Tai Chi
for Suzanne
By Malama MacNeil

we practice
in the grey light of morning
cold numbs lips and nostrils
while heat rises within our clothes
prickling pain in fingers yields
to streaming chi as the breath pumps

moving quickly, almost in unison
you lead, I follow 
match speed, copy intensity
within this flowing moment
we are no longer separate as
a passing train's sound surrounds us
in this booming, flashing, trundling now
as big as a boxcar, a boxcar,
as big...

we turn, circle, spin the energy out 
let it move chest and arms, lift leg,
weight this foot now, now that
my narrow being opens wide
to hold the shimmering cold
radiates from the whirling center
so vast
immense within, finds
the winter landscape of origin
the polar point of eqilibrium
where matter
has its source
and all is possible

we practice the way of balance
to advance, we yield
to rise, we sink
moving fast, we stand still
warm to the heart
we eat the cold

From the collection Signals from the Heart by Malama MacNeil


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