Listening - a poem meditation

listening meditation wendy ann greenhalgh.jpg

A listening meditation in the form of a poem 

An offering...

Sit somewhere quietly and read this to yourself.

Take time to pause after each line and in the spaces between the lines - for listening.

You can listen to me reading it too - if you scroll to the end - but your own voice may be your best guide into silence. 


Ask yourself,




Am I listening?


Drop these words into the silence. Wait

for the responsive stillness

of the body.


Am I listening?


Sit quietly. Without straining.

Hang there

in the space

between the words. Suspend everything

but this.


Am I listening?


And let go.

Don't expect answers. This is not

a meditation about answers.

It's not a meditation about questions

either. Because both of these

would require an outcome.

This is simply a practice in listening.

So ask yourself again, with no expectation.

Am I listening?


Am I listening, body?


Then open. Listening is an opening.


Body, I am listening.

Let the word body be an endearment.

Let it be a declaration of love, this - I am listening.

I am listening, body.


Body, I am listening.

It's like saying, dear one, my love, I am here,

I am here for you,

I am listening.


What's there? What do you find in the space

that opens

after this loving no-question question is asked?


Perhaps it is tears. It is often tears, for we long to be listened to.

Perhaps it is joy. It is often joy, because we long to be heard.

Perhaps it is stillness. Perhaps it is numbness.

Perhaps it is acceptance. Perhaps it is rejection.

Perhaps it is contraction. Perhaps it is softening.


Sit with it. Whatever it is that first arises.

Sit and listen. 

Listen with your whole body, the way you do

when it's raining heavily and

from your shelter, each splash of water, each falling

drop, can be felt through your skin, reverberating -

so that listening is a knowing,

a felt sense.


Listen this way. Through your skin and down down

down within. Allowing the listening to drop -

deeply -

inside you.

I am listening, belly.


I am listening, heart.

Skin, I am listening.

I am listening, breath.


When you do this you may find

that there is another listening rising

out of your body to meet you.

You are being listened to.

Allow yourself to receive this listening. This reciprocity

of stillness, of silence.


Because do not be mistaken, this is what listening is -

an opening

into silence,

into stillness.

Relax into it. Soften

into presence.


This is who you are.


Keep dropping the question in-

and waiting -

opening -


Am I listening?


This stillness, this silence, it is

all around you

if you tune into it.

Feel it in the space of your room.

I am listening, room.


Feel it in the space outside your window.

I am listening, clouds.


Bring that same attentive, waiting, listening presence

to the whole world.

Eyes open,

with all your senses.

I'm listening, trees.


I'm listening, rain.

I'm listening, sky.

I'm listening, wind.

I'm listening, light?


Continue listening.

Sometimes inside the body.

Sometimes outside the body.


Do this until

there seems no distinction

between the two. 


Do this until

the silence and stillness in both

seem equally to answer

each other. 


Do this until

you get a sense of the

waiting stillness

and listening

both inside you

and outside you.


Do this until

you are ready

to start listening

in every moment

as you continue your day.



Listening - a poem meditation. Notes To Myself by Wendy Ann Greenhalgh. © 2017