Both John Paul II and T.S. Eliot give people something to hope for: Blessed John Paul speaks of a new springtime on the horizon signaling the emergence of a culture of life, and Eliot ends “The Waste Land” on a hopeful, if cryptic, note...
Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.
Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
Two days after Christmas, on the 27th of December, the Church keeps the feast of St. John the Evangelist. It is fitting that the Gospel writer whose prologue delves so deeply into the mystery of Incarnation, and whose...
Last year I was asked by the Precentor of Wells Cathedral if I would write an extra 8th Antiphon sonnet to go with the special 8th O antiphon, O Virgo Virginum, which was used in English churches and Cathedrals in the...
Before first-frost enfolds the woodland glade,
Compelling fowl and foliage to flight,
Anoint the earth with balm of prayers prayed.
The bodies of beleaguered brothers laid
Have yet to rot and yet to reunite,
Before first-frost enfolds the woodland glade.
Many modern observers view the university as little more than an instrument to achieve social and economic objectives, and to the extent that they are successful at corralling universities into these projects, they signal the end of liberal learning...
A renowned medievalist who did her post-doctoral work at Oxford under such luminaries as J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, Sister Madeleva Wolff wrote poetry as beautifully as she handled expertly all the chores of a Wisconsin farmer...
“Accidents are so often God’s way of being doubly...
He sat in a wheeled chair, waiting for dark,
And shivered in his ghastly suit of grey,
Legless, sewn short at elbow. Through the park
Voices of boys rang saddening like a hymn,
Voices of play and pleasure after day,
Till gathering sleep had mothered...
Francesco Petrarch and Laura de Sade likely never met or spoke, but Petrarch wrote hundreds of sonnets about her and to her...
When we think of love sonnets, most of us think of the sappy ooze of lyricists or...
Lo! I am come to autumn,
When all the leaves are gold;
Grey hairs and golden leaves cry out
The year and I are old.
In youth I sought the prince of men,
Captain in cosmic wars,
Our Titan, even the weeds would show
When by thy scorn, O murd'ress, I am dead
And that thou think'st thee free
From all solicitation from me,
Then shall my ghost come to thy bed,
And thee, feign'd vestal, in worse arms shall see;
Then thy sick taper will begin to wink,
In The Waste Land, T.S. Eliot gives us a terrifying gaze at the spiritual reality of the world. All men are cracked, thirsty and longing for death...
“The awful daring of a moment’s surrender / which an age of prudence can never retract / by this, and...
This is the village where the funeral
Stilted its dusty march over deep ruts
Up the hillside covered with queen’s lace
To the patch of weeds known finally to all.
Of her virtues large tongues were loud
As I, a stranger, trudged the streets
Lo! ’t is a gala night
Within the lonesome latter years!
An angel throng, bewinged, bedight
In veils, and drowned in tears,
Sit in a theatre, to see
A play of hopes and fears,
While the orchestra breathes fitfully
The music of the spheres.
Mimes, in the form...