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Ash Wednesday

The clouds are fused with amber fireAs vultures climb a dirgy gyre,Babel building with each bird,Glutted on the primal Word.Later one lights on my head,Its talons tight, its wings still spread. —Steven Knepper Image by Jo Naylor via Creative Commons. Image cropped. . . . . Continue Reading »


In Bethany, what might the Lord have saidHad Martha never questioned Mary’s ways;If Mary were the one to speak instead?A very different question she might raise:“Lord, don’t you care that Martha will not sitAnd be attentive to your tender voice”?“O Mary, Mary, this I will admit:It’s true . . . . Continue Reading »

Briefly Noted

No Apologies: Why Civilization Depends on the Strength of Men is the latest in a string of brilliant offerings from Anthony Esolen: Out of the Ashes: Rebuilding American Culture, ­Nostalgia: Going Home in a Homeless World, and Sex and the Unreal City. Utilizing his . . . . Continue Reading »

Litter Crew

Litter Crew Ahead.Their budget’s in the red,but still they have a signthat has always said:Litter Crew Ahead. The younger and the older,the timid and the bolder,in a ragged linethey’re down below the shoulder.In rain that makes them colder, they patiently collectthe things that we eject,our . . . . Continue Reading »


It seems a silly thing, an object ratherFor study by the great pathologists,That anyone should live in fear of Eros;But just think how their names have swelled to lists: The god who chased a woman to a tree;The Moor who crushed the breath within his love;That queen ensconced within a strange . . . . Continue Reading »

Dust Bowl

—After photographs by Dorothea Lange taken in the Texas Panhandle Alone, a woman stands in black and whitesurveying a discolored sky aboveand nothing on the earth around her, savea windmill, with its blades congealed on film, vain, futile. Pride has not deserted her,her stance proclaims; but . . . . Continue Reading »

A Prayer to Jonah’s God

Forgive us, O Lord God of the Hebrews,for feeding Jonah to a large-mouthed whale.We sacrificed for You more than he did.He hid in the hull, snoozing like a babe. We prayed to Hercules of ancient days,whose double pillars, emerald and gold,always guide us off the coast near Cadiz.But our gods will . . . . Continue Reading »

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