All this talk about the mind –
my mind loves it.
Keep talking, it says,
don’t mind me.
Keep thinking, it says.
It feels so good,
oh, yeah, right there, that’s it, the mind purrs.
Besides, the mind warns,
if you don’t pay close attention
you might miss some important instructions.
A brilliant insight will come and go –
and where will you be
if you’re not hanging on every thought?
I’ll be here, I’ll say.
I’ll be here, coming back to my breath,
the breath, that most brilliant idea beyond ideas.
I’ll be here, seeing you, noticing
judging-mind and judging-of-judging mind.
I’ll be here, coming back to the breath.
Meanwhile, ambitious-mind, proving-mind
will set out under a heavy pack,
back straining, shoulders sagging,
attempting eighteen countries in fifteen days.
A whirlwind tour! Pack it in!
When the mind returns, bedraggled,
I’ll be here, home, coming back to the breath.
Here, take the bed, I’ll say.
I see you’ve lost some weight. You must be tired.
The mind will not respond.
The mind will simply comply,
get tucked in like a child
who must sleep in order to grow.
And while the mind dreams its busy dreams,
its stories spanning centuries and continents,
I will sit watch,
I will sit – mindful, mindless, my breath
a quiet caretaker, a guarantor
of this present moment.