Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

The Phone Not Ringing

From the March 2019 Print Edition

The cumuli reach to the noontime moon.Nuthatch and warbler, starling and cowbird,Fall like the famished on seed and suet.Off their heads today, they trill and drone. When I was a young man, how I would curseThe dullness inhabiting this place.Now I hold my breath so it will not break.I have the . . . . Continue Reading »


From the April 2013 Print Edition

Here she is again, old Worm-beak, Breast the color of a mud lake, Perched on a post of the rail fence, An eye of shining insolence. Frowzy, windblown, she whistles twice Some notes retrieved from Paradise, Swoops and spears the lawn and is gone Into the cherry’s greening crown. . . . . Continue Reading »