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Tentatively, Religion

By Christian Detisch Poetry

What! Did the Hand then of the Potter shake?                             —Rubaiyat The kick wheel turns against the spondees of her feet —clop-clop—upon the floor: amorphous clay shines like a seal’s skin. We are uncarved blocks, says the Tao. Hum-hum, says the wheel. And I am Yahweh at dust, she says, her hands tucked and carving…

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Resurrection at Cookham

By Greg Miller Poetry

Stanley Spencer, 1924–27 Cascading white roses! Their throne arbored shade’s —-“curious scent” Spencer recalled while painting. Those Seven Sisters perfume ——-my heart. God the Father’s broad: solid ————–as a Giotto Madonna, his curve-plane’s not ours. His hand’s in his son’s hair. Christ, free, in his white gown, cradles three babies, one naked, in folds of…

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Imagineer of Variety

By John Terpstra Poetry

Maker of heaven and earth ——-of time and season Thinker-upper of soil —— of autumn decay, and rot and roots drawing nutrients ——-whatever they are that feed and sustain —— the beauty of the lilies, and the violets Imagineer of variety Puller-offer of the impossible breaking our hearts ——-every spring day ——-with greater magnolia blossom ————–finer,…

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The Potter

By Sarah Klassen Poetry

So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw [her] working at the wheel.                                       —Jeremiah 18:3 Coming in from the wind, disheveled, we cluster like commas around the woman at the wheel. Her foot…

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Again to Port Soderick

By Robert Cording Poetry

(from Hopkins’s journal of a vacation on the Isle of Man, August 1872) So much need in that “Again.” To see it in good weather. To look down again from the cliffs at the high water of a full tide. To hold the kaleidoscope of the waves to his eye and watch them churn and…

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Orchard

By Valerie Wohlfeld Poetry

Numb-nerved roots plumb frigid ground. Death, not prayer, rules the apple grove. Love, not death, moves Jesus in his alcove. Soundlessly apples fall earthbound. Tapped sap opens the maple’s wound. The moon pulls earthly seas in gravity’s groove. The wall of roses spent, thorns lasso the loose trellis. Time owns the shroud and the crown…

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A Photograph from the Hubble Telescope

By William Wenthe Poetry

These luminous clouds and whorls of amethyst, jade, and coral are transmitted down to earth as a babble of data: monochrome of linty gray that arrives in computers at NASA, gets filtered out, and colored in with a menu of splendid hues: the better to illuminate the original edge of the universe, and imagine the…

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Creed in the Santa Ana Winds

By Bronwen Butter Newcott Poetry

You believe He’s stronger than the desert wind butting against the fence, wind that ignites sagebrush, tears through the hills and strips the houses to ash. Despite your lips that crack till blood comes, skin that grows rough between your fingers, you believe He will be solid to your touch the way the bay is…

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Canticle of Want

By Marjorie Stelmach Poetry

Lord of worn stone cliffs and the guileless trill          of the canyon wren; Lord of stunted hemlocks, imperiled mussels, seeds that fall on shallow soil;          Lord of boreal forests, of the fragile nitrogen cycle, of vanishing aquifers, spreading          deserts; Lord of neglect and…

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The Name of God

By Anya Silver Poetry

Like a baker, swaddling the juice and heft of apples in pastry, I want my mouth to cradle the delicious name of God. Kissing the Torah, I breathe the dust that has lain on the name of God, imagine ink on my indrawn breath. I will dream myself into the body of a bee. I…

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