“Who Am I?”
[I wrote this poem in 2008 while on a train ride from New York City heading back to Massachusetts after having taken a yoga class. During the practice, the instructor talked to us about the “infamous ego” and how we dedicated yogis were working toward shedding the trappings of the ego, by first recognizing its illusory nature, but at least recognizing that it fools us by getting us to think we are many things, as we may be. During the class, he posed this question several times, during moments of pause, during the peak moments when we were deep in asana, and at the end during Savasana. On the train ride home, these are the words that poured out of my head and onto a random slip of paper in my backpack. I like reading it sometimes, because it brings me back to that day, but also it reminds me to let go of ego and to catch the myriad ways in which labels creep back into my consciousness and seem to become important again].
I am energy. I am spirit. I am flesh. I am muscle. I am bone. I am tissue. I am nerve endings. I am light. I am lightness. I am heat. I am sound. I am soul. I am desire. I am impulse. I am need. I am hunger. I am thirst. I am want. I am effort. I am intention. I am love. I am limit. I am potential. I am sensation. I am perception. I am eternal. I am impermanent. I am stimulus. I am response. I am music. I am thought. I am feeling. I am mind. I am heart. I am breath. I am vibration. I am water. I am knowledge. I am memory. I am wisdom. I am ignorance. I am observer. I am object. I am everything. I am God. I am nothing. I am a mirror of you.
– David M. Wolgin (4/19/08)