Poets’ Corner

The prophets Hosea and Jonah. Drawing by Raphael.


Remain with me. I do not choose you less For knowing long your wiles and waywardness. Be rooted with me, planted side by side, Though blighted fruit and thorns be multiplied. Rest with me, while the desert wastes increase, The garden fails, the vine and fig tree cease: Do not depart, although shame and distress…



What could have been— Littlest life Measured in fruit? Holding a knife, I remember, As I slice a plum That was this week’s— And cut my thumb. Other bellies Swell around me While my blood still Comes like the sea. Nothing grows under My ribs—no teeth, No bones, no soul. Instead, beneath My heart, it’s…


Transposing Deity

Rounded shoulders loom over my chest, so tight burdened by my cross: is it like yours? Pressed nose-close the ground all light absorbs where darkness drowns already-strainéd sight. Jaundiced doldrums swallow dispirited hope, I look up the deep hole to see only the tiniest of light halos so very far above me. The best of…



Asleep, awake. There is the duck, there is the drake. Along, alone. This is an egg, that is a stone. Behind, before. There is the wall, there is the door. Before, behind. There are the knocks on the hard mind. Alone, along. That is a lie, this is a song. Awake, asleep. Here are the…


This Bird has Flown

One thing I want to know   my friend is what’s so good   Norwegian wood? It makes a teaky kind of cage where you are held   hawk under hood Although I love to hear you sing you bide your time   not as you should for something good’s been undermined in sneaky ways   Norwegian wood I doubt…


Prayer-Beads to Saint Kyneburgha

1. It is within your sacred atrium I would contemplate, know at-one-ment with sculptured, feminine forma: an Annunciation carved for the artist’s wife, Clare, who is figure-double of the Virgin Annunciate; & this Lamentation Lady suckling her Christ-child; both marvellous. And if the stone be immaculate, then here we have proof, we who are witness-…


The Third, the Youngest Son in Fairy Tales

His soul a glacial lake of deep humility, The third will sacrifice his only mite of bread When roadside witches beg, for he’s agreeable And no encounter mars his cool tranquility Or makes him lose all faith and wish that he were dead— Not talking wolf or other unforeseeable And fabulous inhabitant of fairy tales,…


If You Begin

If you begin a lullaby, You’ll know what words, what tune. The harder question, though, is why, Which—like a red balloon Floating along, as evening comes, On soft, pale purple air, Just out of reach of laws and sums, Unanswered—hovers there. The red balloon floats there alone, Dark seeping in from shade. No wonder we’re…


Book Review: “Wading through Lethe”

Wading through Lethe. By Paulette Guerin. Athens, GA: FutureCycle Press, 2022. 84 pp. $15.95 (paper). Greek mythology held that the waters of five distinct rivers ran through the bowels of the underworld. That Paulette Guerin has chosen as her theme the river of Lethe—forgetfulness— illustrates how pervasive has been the Christianization of paganism in the…



I learn there is to be a rare display of planets ordered in the summer sky, so off I go before the start of day in hope of seeing such a sight nearby. I come to where I view the crescent Moon with Venus to the left and Jupiter off right, but since the Sun…

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