All my yoga bolsters and blankets have been moved over to Fairfield House, a beautiful historic building here in Nelson that was restored bit by bit by the community over the last 20-30 years. It seems very appropriate therefore to teach Restorative Yoga at Fairfield and invite the community to come and restore themselves bit by bit!

The house is set in the most beautiful gardens that at this time of year are awakening into their full bloom. The house rests in the lap of a forested hill so the space is embraced by an arboretum of trees. What a blessing to be teaching from here where all sorts of community rituals, celebrations and gatherings have been held.

This weeks classes all took on a slightly different feel but this poem featured in all of them as a way of arriving and stating the gladness that happens when we allow ourselves to rest for a while with the trees. I have added a few of Mary Oliver’s poems into these blogs as she speaks so vividly and potently about life and presence, she is really a modern day Rishi or Seer I feel.

When I Am Among the Trees

by Mary Oliver

When I am among the trees,
especially the willows and the honey locust,
equally the beech, the oaks and the pines,
they give off such hints of gladness.
I would almost say that they save me, and daily.

I am so distant from the hope of myself,
in which I have goodness, and discernment,
and never hurry through the world
   but walk slowly, and bow often.

Around me the trees stir in their leaves
and call out, “Stay awhile.”
The light flows from their branches.

And they call again, “It’s simple,” they say,
“and you too have come
into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled
with light, and to shine.”