Monday, January 24, 2011



To pray, we need walls around us.
Boundaries make safety, make shelter,

let us remain alongside thought
until we exit doors and walk outside.

To converse with deities, to listen
to the psyche, go into a box or a room.

Your brain will assume it is safe
to allow its lid to be removed. Space

is sacred when scarce. Prayers
must be patiently coaxed out, decanted,

for it is scary to venture from
the chapel of the mind, its temples.


  1. Spending time looking at that artist's work was a chapel for me. This was such a great way to start my day, Hannah. Thank you.

  2. Some thought-provoking lines in this poem.

    The artist's work reminds me the work of Yuri Gorbachev (cousin of Mikhail).

  3. Often the Spirit speaks through us to illuminate those around us. This is one of those times. Thank you Hannah, for your Divine Words!

  4. Small spaces do open me up for prayer in a way that large ones don't.

  5. Good to concentrate on this one, thanks! Pray in a closet vs. Emily Dickinson in her back yard.... (and I go back and forth on this!)

  6. I definitely feel that way in church, that I am alongside thought, and that the scarce space is sacred.

    Thank you for this poem Hannah.

  7. I really only pray when I am not in a building; however, the idea of my head's lid being opened is very interesting to me! Lovely poem Hannah! xo

  8. This piece needs to be next to the one you have about being in nature. It immediately made me think of it.
    Do you know about the Jungian/alchemical concept of "tenemos". I think you might find it inspiring( not that you need any inspiration).

  9. One fundamental function that a well-conceived, well-made poem can serve is to allow the reader to absorb and interpret its entirety according to his/her own inclinations.

    Where others have seen this contemplation of the relationship between location and belief as a vindication of faith, I'm interpreting it as a need for a sort of contextual theatre within which to play out the illusion of faith.

    In no way does this diametric variation in interpretation invalidate the poem as insufficiently clear in its transmission of meaning. On the contrary, it declares its universality. No higher praise can be offered.

  10. I think some folks just need community prayer, or prayer in assigned seating. Formality suits them. Others (me) allow the dandelion seeds to fly where they may, you know?

    This poem is beautiful. xoxoxo

  11. "The chapel of the mind" -- that phrase reminds me of the concept of "cathedrals of the mind" I learned in grad school, a method people used to use to remember things. Fascinating artwork behind the poem as well.
    PS: I prefer to pray/mediate on the run, although my favorite place of prayer is in the forest and on walks.


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