Benedictine Life, Poetry

“Hearing” by W.S. Merwin and the Benedictine Practice of Listening

This is Part 2 of the series 8 Things Poets and Monastics Can Teach Us About Happiness; with 8 Poems to Make Life More Meaningful If you missed it, you can read Part 1 of this series here. About the Benedictine Practice of Listening The practice of listening is at the heart of Benedictine spirituality. When… Continue reading “Hearing” by W.S. Merwin and the Benedictine Practice of Listening

Benedictine Life, Poetry

8 Things Poets and Monastics Can Teach Us About Happiness; with 8 Poems to Make Life More Meaningful–Part 1 of a series

What poets and monastics have in common When people think about what poets and monastics (monks and nuns who live in monasteries) have in common, the list might look like this: They have their heads in the clouds; They’re hermits;. They dress weird; And they’re dying off.  Like all potent rumors, there’s a smidgeon of… Continue reading 8 Things Poets and Monastics Can Teach Us About Happiness; with 8 Poems to Make Life More Meaningful–Part 1 of a series

Poetry, Reading

Unpacking the Boxes: a small tribute to Donald Hall, (1928-2018)

Yesterday, when I read in the Concord Monitor that one of the last major American poets of his generation, Donald Hall, died at his home at the age of 89, I felt sad that I had neglected to write to him one more time. I never told him how much his example of the good… Continue reading Unpacking the Boxes: a small tribute to Donald Hall, (1928-2018)

Benedictine Life, Poetry

The destruction of apathy: how Emma Gonzalez mobilized the tools of poetry to empower the #NeverAgain movement

On March 26, 2018, at the ‘March for Our Lives’ demonstration in Washington D.C., one of the march’s organizers, Emma Gonzalez, took the stage to speak against the insane notion that nothing can be done to protect us and our children from gun violence.  People were shaken out of apathy and the #NeverAgain movement, organized… Continue reading The destruction of apathy: how Emma Gonzalez mobilized the tools of poetry to empower the #NeverAgain movement

Poetry

This is not spring and this is not a poem

April 10, 2018. Snow everywhere and it's miserably frigid. The calendar says spring arrived twenty one days ago but this is not spring. So here's a poem for questioning how things ought to be in light of how things are and vice versa. Christine Klocek-Lim’s nuanced poem, “This is Not a Poem,” is an ars poetica —… Continue reading This is not spring and this is not a poem

Poetry

12 Places to Put Poetry for National Poetry Month

For impatient people: Because poetry has made me less self-absorbed and more empathetic, you can skip my explanation of why poetry is important enough to deserve a national month celebrating it, and jump straight to the 12 places to put poetry list. Just click here . So here's the story about why poetry is so important that… Continue reading 12 Places to Put Poetry for National Poetry Month

Poetry

Muriel Rukeyser on poetry as a weapon against hate

In her 1949 book, The Life of Poetry, Muriel Rukeyser indicates what motivated her to make poems: “Writing is only another way of giving, a courtesy, if you will, and a form of love.” Rukeyser was perhaps as well known for her political activism as for her poetry. Living through the death and destruction of… Continue reading Muriel Rukeyser on poetry as a weapon against hate