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How Beautiful the Beloved

By Gregory Orr Poetry

Occult power of the alphabet— How it combines And recombines into words That resurrect the beloved Every time. ________Breaking open The dry bones of each Letter—seeking The secret of life That must be hidden inside. § Fate not just a pair of scissors Waiting at the end to cut the thread, But there at the…

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A Conversation with Gregory Orr

By Aaron Baker Interview

Gregory Orr is the author of ten books of poetry, most recently Concerning the Book that Is the Body of the Beloved and How Beautiful the Beloved (both from Copper Canyon). Long known for his condensed and crafted style, in his recent work, Orr demonstrates a shift toward the personal lyric at its most stripped-down,…

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Four Poems

By Gregory Orr Poetry

Knowing life grinds us, And dust Is what we’ll become. Sensing, likewise, That the moral Of our story Has to do With being mortal. Yet love grounds us. And the beloved Grows in us: We are her slow cocoon. And the poem is a door; The song, a little window. § Bowed by a ceaseless…

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Naming the Beloved: Ethics, Aesthetics, and Lyric Poetry

By Gregory Orr Essay

THE RELATIONSHIP between ethics and aesthetics has preoccupied me off and on since the summer of my eighteenth year. It was 1965, and I’d just returned from several months working as a volunteer in the civil rights movement in Mississippi and Alabama. I spent the majority of my time in jails. My reasons for driving…

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