Alexander Technique in East Yorkshire

Alexander Technique and standing still

Stand Still

Recently, I rediscovered a poem called Lost by David Wagoner. When I came across it, I remembered that I had read it out to a group of my students when we were thinking about being in the present moment, something that is an essential part of the Alexander Technique. I am so glad I found the poem again:



Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.

David Wagoner

This time as I read it, I thought it would make a perfect subject for my AT topic this month. The bits that stood out when I read it were:

Stand still.

The forest knows where you are.

Let it find you.

So, I have been standing still and letting it find me, both inside my house and outside. I didn’t know what “it” was and I still don’t but occasionally I felt I was totally present with a great intelligence. I felt part of it.

As I am writing this I realise I forgot to ask for permission (as the poem insists) and I think I will add that to the process from now on. Perhaps all I need to say is “here”?

Of course, as with these things, sometimes I was grasping (end gaining) and wanting a connection to happen. Often with all that grasping nothing appeared to unfold, though something will have been occurring.

Once, as I stood outside in my garden, listening, waiting to be found, I felt such a connection to the world, and felt in and of the world, it took my breath away. I felt such peace.

Most times, I noticed how much I had to release, let go, be agenda-less. I felt great ease just with being still and waiting and releasing. Letting the weight of my life drop away. The present moment is never the same. Each time I stopped I experienced something new.

If you decide to let it find you I would love to know what you discover. Let me know?

Jane Clappison MSTAT
01759 307282


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