Category Archives: Poem

Ursula Le Guin, “To the Rain”

In the Annual Report of the American Council of Learned Societies (where I worked from 1993 to 1997), the current President of ACLS quotes lovely poem by Ursula LeGuin: To the Rain BY URSULA K. LE GUIN Mother rain, manifold, measureless, … Continue reading

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“The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” By Langston Hughes

The Negro Speaks of Rivers BY LANGSTON HUGHES I’ve known rivers:I’ve known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of human blood in human veins. My soul has grown deep like the rivers. I bathed in the Euphrates … Continue reading

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Two River Poems: Emily Dickinson & Sara Teasdale

My River Runs to Thee, By Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) My River runs to thee—Blue Sea! Wilt welcome me? My River wait reply—Oh Sea—look graciously—I’ll fetch thee BrooksFrom spotted nooks—Say—Sea—Take Me!  The River, By Sara Teasdale (1884-1933) I came from the sunny … Continue reading

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Ralph Waldo Emerson, The River

The River Ralph Waldo Emerson, 1803 – 1882 And I behold once more My old familiar haunts; here the blue river, The same blue wonder that my infant eye Admired, sage doubting whence the traveller came,— Whence brought his sunny bubbles ere he … Continue reading

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Wendell Berry, “The Peace of Wild Things”

February 7, 2018 The Peace of Wild Things When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go … Continue reading

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War Has Been Given a Bad Name

December 27, 2015 War Has Been Given A Bad Name By Bertold Brecht I am told that the best people have begun saying How, from a moral point of view, the Second World War Fell below the standard of the … Continue reading

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Jesus Meets Shadow

December 8, 2015 Imagined by Neil Gaiman: “Have you ever thought about what it means to be a god?” asked the man.  He had a beard and a baseball cap. “It means you give up your mortal existence to become … Continue reading

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Dover Beach, by Matthew Arnold

December 1, 2015 Dover Beach By Matthew Arnold The sea is calm tonight. The tide is full, the moon lies fair Upon the straits; on the French coast the light Gleams and is gone; the cliffs of England stand, Glimmering … Continue reading

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Did I Serve? I’ve Never Been Under Fire

February 24, 2015 There’s a certain luster in having served in the military. Members of Congress like to claim it, journalists, too, even when these claims don’t turn out to be accurate. Having served in an elite branch of the … Continue reading

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For the Fruits of His Creation, Thanks Be to God

November 10, 2014 At First Parish Church yesterday we sang a hymn written by Fred Pratt Green in 1970 called “For the Fruits of His Creation.” The words are lovely; the final verse concludes with these:  For the wonders that … Continue reading

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