Autumn Road

I follow the clean-edged macadam northTo catch the train. The maples lining bothSides hang with leaves turned soft but brilliant reds,Oranges, and umbers that will make their bedsSoon in the unmown grass that lines my street,And crumble at the weight of passing feet.The people who just moved in . . . . Continue Reading »

Academic Dishonesty Policy

Don't borrow another's thoughtwithout citation. Don't filchanother writer's diction,assuming I'm deaf to styleand tone—elements I teach.Remember, if you Google,copy, paste, I will followthe crumbs, find your swiped intro,patchwork body paragraphs.I will expose each captive,orphaned sentence. . . . . Continue Reading »

The Crowd

Enticing to the coward is the crowd:It speaks what each dares not to speak alone,And compensates for fear with voices loudTo offer wisdom that it doesn’t own.With stridency, a courage is displayedWhich hadn’t been in evidence before;The shame of individuals afraidFor just a time the crowd lets . . . . Continue Reading »

Tate Unmodern

Allen Tate: The Modern Mind and the Discovery of Enduring Loveby john v. glass iiithe catholic university of america, 376 pages, $59.95 I well remember sitting up half the night annotating Allen Tate’s “Ode to the Confederate Dead” in my Norton anthology. As do I remember reading for the first . . . . Continue Reading »

Burns in Glory

The Oxford Edition of the Works of Robert Burns, Volume I: Commonplace Books, Tour Journals, and Miscellaneous Proseedited by nigel n. leaskoxford, 512 pages, $200 Robert Burns, “Rabbie” to those who love him, sired thirty-six children with eighteen mistresses before dying of exhaustion at age . . . . Continue Reading »

Caribbean Rhapsode

The great poet of the Caribbean, Derek Walcott, passed away at home on his native island of St. Lucia on March 17. It is hard to summarize his achievement. He wrote more than twenty books of poetry, most notably Omeros (1990), which transplants the Trojan War to the Caribbean fishing world . . . . Continue Reading »

Ruth to Naomi

Narrow the house may be and poor,But should it be where you will stay,Then I will want for nothing more.Entreat me not to go away. Your bread shall be my bread, your prayerShall be my prayer. And always knowThat though you go I know not where,Gladly I follow where you go. —Thomas . . . . Continue Reading »