Invocation to Patanjali
O Sage Patanjali, who brought us yoga,
We sit before you, palms together, bow,
recite this kernel of your yoga sutras:
Let us study the art of yoga, now.
Single-minded practice stops the stream
of thought, unveils our true identity.
Or else we’re caught up in our dreams
and can’t distinguish truth from fantasy.
O snake-man, shaded by your seven cowls,
incarnation of Lord Vishnu’s cobra,
show us how to burn with zeal,
cut through delusion, discern what’s real,
heal our bodies, turn our minds around.
O snake-man, blow your conch and wake us, now.
John W. Steele is a psychologist, yoga teacher and graduate of the MFA Poetry Program at Western Colorado University, where he studied with Julie Kane, Earnest Hilbert and David Rothman. His poetry has appeared in Amethyst Review, Boulder Weekly, Blue Unicorn, The Lyric, Society of Classical Poets and Verse-Virtual.