Poetry

Listen Well

-by Ananda Vrindavan Devi Dasi

Listening is at the heart of bhakti

At the heart of life. It’s the last

To go, did you know?

And here’s what I have found

In my new way of being

That life has become alive again

And new meaning arrived for

Service and humility

Words I did with practice

Wanting to be there

Looking for peace in those

Words alone, and not who’s behind them.

Which is, the other,

the other person,

The one who is making the noise

Telling their story by their life

Interacting with mine

And the Big Other who

Is so expertly and naturally

Everywhere but not in your face

If you don’t want it.

Suddenly, listening for me has

Freed me from myself.

I want to run to the top of the

Mountain and shout with arms up

“It’s not about me!”

And not because that’s how I’m ‘meant’

To feel, but because that’s how I feel.