Featured Poems

Posts in sacred space
“The most penetrating preachers”†

…they struggle with all the force of their lives

for one thing only: to fulfill themselves according

to their own laws, to build up their own form, 

to represent themselves…Whoever knows how

to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen

to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach

learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred

by particulars, the ancient law of life.

—Hermann Hesse

 

Today I lay in the crunchy leaves of this homey 

oak pulled skyward where branches sway sovereign 

and Chronos’ foot lofts into my world view. 

 

I walk through an exploded alder and sit alone

in the sculpted stump throne and finger the fresh

initials of a chain-saw weilding Lumberjack and mourn the grandeur of fifty years turned into 

raw timber pyre. 

We walk on the red carpet where giants 

gingerly perch, shallow roots in our Mother 

fueling endless triumph in a duel with gravity. 

There’s a creek and Chronos hears the future falling. 

When a tree erupts, years later,

I am here for the sermon.

 

† With great gratitude to Hermann Hesse’s
Bäume. Betrachtungen und Gedichte

 

mama earth, sacred spaceAsh Good
They Say It Is A Sacred Space

I always think it is beautiful then—
the big arches, the wooden planked ceiling, 
the long benches. The place I sing hymns. 
My kindergarten teacher stands up in front there
and says with the same conviction
that she names the colors that one day
(we just don’t know which one) 
we’ll all rise up out of here, out of our clothes, through the pretty wood ceiling, 
up to heaven to be with god. 

I always think it is beautiful there. 
Until I watch my daddy confess his sins, crying, then dipped clean, still not sure he is whole. 
Until I watch mama go kneel before that god
who hasn’t taken me yet, sobbing, surrendered, 
broken. The frail old lady behind me
has a perfect silver updo and her voice
sings Soprano. Holy. Holy. Holy is the Lord God Almighty. The man is red faced while he yells
about the ways I should be. 
They say it is a sacred space.

I roll out my afghan and light
a dollar store Jesus candle. 
When I burn the palo santo
this place is sacred. 
When the spot in the center cracks open raw
my grandmother’s grandmother’s great-
grandmother sings with me, 

Remember sweet child, remember you’re okay, 
and you’re the whole thing. 
Everything here is just for you
to remember—
you made it just for you
to remember—
When you die you return to
read these words you forgot you wrote
to remind you that you’ve forgotten
everything.
remember—
you’re love
and nothing else

They Say It Is a Sacred Space c 2017 Ash Good.