On the Mats 1
(please teach me)
Fear and flow dance awkwardly.
This moment collides with hints of elsewhere.
Unfazed by hesitation,
with the imperative for wholeness and halos.
On the Mats 2
(the physical, mental, and spiritual blending of uke and nage)
Hands reaching to a partner I can see but cannot find.
My fingers lax, devoid of try,
acclimated to emptiness.
A ten-note mantra of disbelief and resignation.
Extend, Sensei said.
As I open my timid grasp,
my heart races.
To reach again toward the possibility of nothingness seems a reckless choice.
But here I have been guided well before.
I can extend my heart if not yet my hands.
Sensing toward the possibility of connection, my heart speeds
but does not seize.
I find the softening where hands reaching
span the space.