William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Breathing’

Running With the World

I don’t warm up before running. Where the street meets the bottom of our short driveway, I simply start in — slowly at first, and then, within the space of a few houses, I begin to pick up speed. From there on my speed varies. My stride is never large. My feet are always under my body, not ahead. My speed is increased by quickening my steps, and by taking […]

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Running Meditation

I’m still running early in the morning. It’s nice to be out when it’s dark, with little or no traffic. Gradually, according to the body’s suggestions and requests, I’m opening my stride and increasing my pace, adding to the distance I cover and the time I spend out. My heart and lungs respond willingly and gratefully to the pleasant demand, as do my feet, my legs, and the rest of […]

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Space

Running through space, and with each breath the same space running through me, then becoming space again. The body passing through space, feeling space yield without breaking or being divided, fluid like water. Space clinging to the skin and entering through the pores. Space in the blood. Space in the cells. Space the distance between stars. Uphill and down, to stop at the door. Quietly, now, not to disturb. Space […]

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Forty-Two Houses

Counting the one we live in, between here and the stop sign there are seven houses. I just ran to the stop sign and back three times. That makes forty-two houses. It’s foggy this morning and fairly chilly out, just above freezing. Nice and dark. No wind. Dawn just a thought, not yet a glow. Maybe a promise. We shall see. I refuse to take it for granted. Forty-two houses. […]

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Things I Ask Myself

How slowly can I breathe? How deeply? How calm can I be? Somewhat calm? Quite calm? Infinitely calm? How far can I run? And for how long? How patient can I be? How helpful, how considerate, how understanding, how gentle? How little harm can I do? How little disturbance can I make in the world? How present can I be? How aware? How grateful? How devoid of ego? How much […]

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Movement, Breath, Miracle

In the canyon this morning, we were passed in small groups by three or four dozen runners preparing for trail events in November. Their ages spanned decades, and they were all happy, friendly, and smiling, and courteous to those of us walking, giving us ample warning of their approach from behind, thanking us when we had already noticed them coming and had stepped out of their way, and telling us […]

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Rising

Less than two inches of rain appears to have raised the level of Mission Lake about one foot. The thick green coating of algae remains undisturbed. The dead tree upon which birds roosted during summer is now mostly submerged. Further on, a great blue heron rests on what remains visible of another snag, soaking up the very bright early morning sun. The path, too, has been transformed; the dust is […]

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Breath Coins

We spend our entire lives breathing, taking into our lungs and bloodstreams that which is outside the body; and yet a vast majority of us, despite this simple, obvious fact, see ourselves as something apart from nature. Deprived of air, the body dies. The body also requires water. Again, water that exists outside the body must be taken into the body in sufficient amounts, or the body dies. The same […]

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