Archives For *Poetry*

 

Hospitable to the Human
and to the Divine

 
A Review of 
 

The Yearning Life:
Poems

Regina Walton 

Paperback: Paraclete Press, 2016.
Buy Now: [ Amazon ]  [  Kindle ]
 
Reviewed by Lynn Domina
 
 
The poems in Regina Walton’s first collection, The Yearning Life, are written by someone who is not only observant but also thoughtful, even contemplative. They consider questions without, as Keats so famously said, “any irritable reaching after fact and reason.” They often, therefore, straddle that boundary between poetry and prayer.

The opening poem, “Exemplum,” might have been written by one of the desert fathers or mothers. It relies on a direct style with short lines and stanzas, predominantly straightforward sentences, and accessible vocabulary (with one notable exception). Like many of the best poems in this style, its simplicity is deceptive. Here is the first stanza:

A fly lands
On my open book,
And rubs its fingerless palms together
Over the word askesis.

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Here are a few new book releases from this week that are worth checking out:

(Where possible, we have also tried to include a review/interview related to the book…)

 

Keeping Place: Reflections on the Meaning of Home

Jen Pollock Michel

Read an interview with the author… 

NEXT BOOK >>>>>

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Pilgrim in Pumps

 
A Review of 

Still Pilgrim: Poems
Angela Alaimo O’Donnell 

Paperback: Paraclete Press, 2017
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]

Reviewed by James Matichuk

Featured on our list of
Ten New Poetry Books
to Read in 2017!

 

This review originally appeared on the reviewer’s blog.
Reprinted with permission. 
*** Visit his blog for many other insightful reviews!

Angela Alaimo O’Donnell teaches English at Fordham University and is the associate director of Fordham’s Curran Center for American Catholic Studies. She has previously published seven poetry collections (in addition to publishing other books, articles, and essays). Her new collection of poems, Still Pilgrim showcases a steady faith and the journey of a woman through the seasons of life and liturgy.
The project was birthed after O’Donnell made a pilgrimage to Herman Melville’s grave, a few miles from her home in the New York. Melville had written of the passion of men going off to sea, but his grave plot in Woodlawn cemetery in the Bronx was in only one of ‘New York’s five boroughs not surrounded by water” (69).  O’Donnell composed a poem, St. Melville, with these words, “Is this what you were called to still pilgrim,/to sleep beneath six small feet of earth?” (70). An old sailor interred in the earth, still but his work still lives on.

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April is National Poetry Month! 

Although poetry is not easy read in our age of lightning-fast communications and instant gratification, it is an important way of learning to slow down and pay attention to the beauty and the brokenness of the world around us.
 
We all would do well to infuse our lives with more poetry!
 

Here are 10 new poetry books that will be released in 2017 and that we are super-excited about!

(Including collections by Christian Wiman, Mary Oliver, Tania Runyan, and MORE)
 
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Here are a few new book releases from this week that are worth checking out:

(Where possible, we have also tried to include a review/interview related to the book…)

   

An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back

Elisabeth Rosenthal

Listen to an interview with the author from NPR’s Fresh Air...

NEXT BOOK >>>>>

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Sunday April 9th marks the anniversary of the death of Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

In remembrance of his life and work, we offer this poem of his, which appears in the book…

Who am I?: Bonhoeffer’s Theology
through his Poetry

Bernd Wannenwetsch, Editor

 
Paperback: T &T Clark, 2012.
Buy Now: [  Amazon ]

 

Dietrich Bonhoeffer Speaks Powerfully
to the Trump Age!

 

Who Am I?

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A Love Beyond Religion
 
A Feature Review of
 

Rumi’s Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love
Brad Gooch.

Hardback: HarperCollins, 2017.
Buy Now: [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]
 
Reviewd by By Erin Ensinger
 
 

FIVE of our Favorite Poems by Rumi

 
Rumi has always been a miracle and a mystery to me. Like many other Americans, I first met Rumi in the dark days after 9/11, when this poet from the Muslim world made his unlikely ascent to the top of the best-seller charts. Raised in conservative circles, I ferreted his poems away from critical eyes, savoring them with all the relish of a guilty pleasure. His spiritual hunger, reckless love and tolerance of people no matter their faith or ethnicity spoke to me almost against my will.  In his new biography, Rumi’s Secret, Brad Gooch captures all of these elements that have caused some to place Rumi in Walt Whitman’s family tree. At the same time, Gooch remains true to his title, preserving an air of mystery around the divine secrets Rumi himself found expressible only through poetry, music and the whirling dance of sama.

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Here are a few new book releases from this week that are worth checking out:

(Where possible, we have also tried to include a review/interview related to the book…)

  

Exit West: A Novel

Mohsin Hamid

Read the NY Times review of this book

NEXT BOOK >>>>>

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This week marked the anniversary of the death of poet Paul Laurence Dunbar.

In remembrance of his life and work, here are five of our favorite poems by him…

Frederick Douglass
Paul Laurence Dunbar

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Edmund_Spenser

Today (Jan. 13) marks the anniversary of the death of English poet Edmund Spenser (died 1599)…

Spenser’s work, and particularly his epic poem The Fairie Queene, was deeply influential on C.S. Lewis.

 

Here are five of our favorite poems by him…

The Sovereign Beauty
Edmund Spenser

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