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Holding Away the Dark

By Pádraig J. Daly Poetry

Fiche bliain ag fás, Fiche bliain ag borradh ’sag at, Fiche bliain ag titim, Fiche bliain cuma tú ann nó as. ___________ —Traidisiúnta, Déisibh Mumhan 1. Dead leaves scrape across the paving of the derelict church. A small crowd is gathered with candles. A priest sits by a white-clothed table. How long more can we…

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Tenebrae

By Anya Krugovoy Silver Poetry

Holy Wednesday Lord, I know that the bitterness is for her own good. Through the numbness that has made her quadriplegic, she has drawn nearer to you, has been purged as with bloodroot of whatever sins still grieved you. Her pneumonia has sent her to hospice. Her descent was rapid. She sleeps her morphine dreams.…

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Through the Ear

By Lauren F. Winner Book Review

The Grammar of God: A Journey into the Words and Worlds of the Bible by Aviya Kushner (Spiegel & Grau, 2015) The Art of Listening in the Early Church by Carol Harrison (Oxford, 2013)   God’s “I” remains the root word that sounds like a pedal note through all of revelation; it resists all attempts…

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Ash Wednesday, Unshowered

By Anya Krugovoy Silver Poetry

My hair’s pulled back to disguise the grime, though maybe it’s well that I’m unclean, since from dust you came, to dust you will return, the priest recites, smearing my forehead. Once, twice, and I’m marked, a lintel in plague years. I’m invited to kneel and read the fifty-first Psalm, recalling how David watched Bathsheba…

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Raven

By Anya Krugovoy Silver Poetry

Tenderly as one cradles a bowl of water, he embraced me, and we rose upwards. Black as night, first mother of songs, he opened my mouth and images thronged around me: some pressed themselves like kisses or worn lace against my arms, while others I only glimpsed in wing-beat. Strong as any lover who had…

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A Conversation with George Saunders

By W. Brett Wiley Interview

George Saunders is the author of four collections of short stories—Civilwarland in Bad Decline (1997), Pastoralia (2001), In Persuasion Nation (2007), and Tenth of December (2014)—as well as a book of essays, The Brain-Dead Megaphone (2007), and an award-winning children’s book, The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip (2005). Civilwarland in Bad Decline was a finalist…

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Full Thunder Moon

By Julie L. Moore Poetry

Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful, for I have taken refuge in you; in the shadow of your wings will I take refuge until this time of trouble has gone by. _______________Psalm 57:1 Sitting in the gazebo at Saint Meinrad Archabbey, ___she hears the sky grumbling as one cloud swells, ______its lining stretched…

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Ritual Images

By Nicole Miller Essay

Ritual Images The Autobiographs of Ira Lippke   IN 1918, a German priest named Martin Gusinde traveled to the islands of Tierra del Fuego off the southern tip of South America. Commissioned by Chile’s Museum of Ethnology and Anthropology to study the region’s indigenous tribes, Gusinde made four expeditions over a period of six years to…

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The Wedding Season

By Maureen McGranaghan Short Story

FATHER BOB MORTON had always enjoyed the wedding season, until this year. Of course, the proper mood came upon him when he felt the adrenaline of bride, groom, and family, and he delivered his homilies, presided over the vows and rings, consecrated the Eucharist, and attended the receptions per protocol. But he did not eat much…

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Lent

By Maurice Manning Poetry

If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts. ___________________—Psalm 95 VI At first the thunder and rain defeat but then renew the ground and break it terribly open. Now even the dawn has heavy darkness in it, the sun, in silence seeming to refuse the sky, has heeded what was needed, to stun…

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