Stories & Poems ~Poems

~Beethoven at St Non’s

Sitting at our last breakfast together
in the St Non’s Retreat Centre,
before we return to our respective lives,
we are listening to Beethoven’s first symphony
as it gambols about the toast and cereal bowls.

Recurring motifs of jealousy surface
on the ill-composed manuscript of my thoughts
“Why am I not a genius too?” I secretly ask,
as I chew on my bran flakes.

A counterpoint of compassion arises for the composer,
not because of his acquired deafness, his alcoholic father.
or his foreshortened life, but because
I realise that poor Ludwig, in all probability,
never had the opportunity to experience the joy of Yoga.

At that moment I see him under the slow June sky,
standing on the cliff top in his undergarments,
arching his back into a bass clef,
as he starts the opening sequence of Surya Namaskar,
his smooth forehead glistening
and his mouth relaxing into a smile.


©Carl Ross

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