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Prayer with Rotohammer

By Joshua Robbins Poetry

Retrofitting Grace Cathedral, San Francisco Let my worship be this work and the force of each bit-strike on masonry. Forswear my doubtful tongue. Let my past words be what they are: failed elegies to the living word. Let praise be pain rejoicing. What rose like dust now falls and it is beautiful and meaningless and…

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Just Time

By Li-Young Lee Poetry

It’s just time, the book I read, the letter I write, the window I look out of. It’s just a needle I thread, a sleeve I keep trying to mend, the spool diminishing. It’s just time inside of time, the future inside the seeds inside the pulp of the apple I eat, skin and all,…

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A Conversation with Sam Phillips

By Jeffrey Overstreet Interview

In 1987, three years after Harper’s heralded her as the “Queen of Christian Rock,” Leslie Phillips sang these words: “You lock me up / with your expectations / Loosen the pressure you’ve choked me with / I can’t breathe.” That song appeared on an album called The Turning, and the title spoke of her decision…

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By Holly Welker Poetry

Someone removes the horses and unicorns and stations the carousel in a hotel lobby. Barstools mark the wheel’s perimeter so you can still go for a ride, watching the room orbit slowly around you and the other raw languid girls likewise drinking martinis on a Thursday afternoon. It takes less time to finish a drink…

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Psalm for the January Thaw

By Luci Shaw Poetry

Blessed be God for thaw, for the clear drops that fall, one by one, like clocks ticking, from the icicles along the eaves. For shift and shrinkage, including the soggy gray mess on the deck like an abandoned mattress that has lost its inner spring. For the gurgle of gutters, for snow melting underfoot when…

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A Conversation with Luci Shaw

By Anne M. Doe Overstreet Interview

Luci Shaw is attentive to balance, cultivating both an active engagement with the arts in culture and the solitude necessary to listen and catch at language. Her twelve acclaimed collections of poetry include What the Light Was Like, Harvesting Fog, and the forthcoming Slow Pleasures. Her nonfiction includes Breath for the Bones: Art, Imagination, and…

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Quantum Physicists in a Night Garden

By Dick Allen Poetry

—Time can be extinguished like a blown-out flame. Black holes dissipate to God knows where, —Yet everything we’ve said and done remains —Like these lilies floating in this garden pool. Each name We’ve said, each paper lantern strung, each cross we’ll bear —In Time can be extinguished like a blown-out flame —Yet floats forever here.…

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Cyprian Variations

By A.E. Stallings Poetry

A. The heart is a divided city Between two alphabets. Church bells, minarets Betoken Time has stopped where it is broken. Nothing forgets. This is called history, not pity, It is not spoken. B. To remember is to cross Through no-man’s land Into an imaginary country You do not recognize But where the streets are…

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Prodigal Body

By Judith Kunst Poetry

Once while I was walking, a man called out to me. He was slender, sitting on the grass with a racing bike beside him. He said, Would you believe a year ago I weighed three hundred pounds? I shook my head, and he said, Nobody else will believe me either. His body showed at once…

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Return to the Beginning

By Jeanne Murray Walker Poetry

The scrambled eggs, already fried and fragrant on a plate, slip back into their shells; each smooth white egg sails toward its vagrant mother chicken, roosts in a fertile cell. The melody beats back to eighth notes which settle, dark spots on the snowy staff of bass and treble clefs, then briefly float through Bach’s…

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