Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links. In case you didn’t know, April was National Poetry Month in the States. This year, same as last, I decided to celebrate by posting a different poem every day on Twitter. My post collecting all of last year’s poems got a great response, so here I am again withContinue reading “National Poetry Month 2018”
If you’ve been on BookTube recently, you probably heard about the “12 Days of Litmas,” created by Adrian at Stripped Cover Lit. Unfortunately, I didn’t find out about it until it was already underway, at which point I thought it would be awkward to join in when I would be two days behind everyone else. So instead, we close out the year at Book Geeks Anonymous by answering each of Adrian’s 12 prompts today.
Long, long ago, not long after I started this blog, I published a list of favorite authors of mine and the authors whom they had pointed to as influences on their work. It was just lists of names, nothing more than that. So today, I’d like to update and expand on some of those entries, guided by the words of the writers themselves.
This Friday is the first day of fall, so naturally, the literature blogs and poetry Twitter are going all out with the autumnal poems. Keats’s “To Autumn” deservedly gets a lot of praise, but my favorite fall poem is one I discovered just recently, Gerard Manley Hopkins’s “Hurrahing in Harvest.” Summer ends now; now, barbarousContinue reading ““Hurrahing in Harvest” by Gerard Manley Hopkins”
In this letter to his then-fiancée Frances Blogg, a twenty-five-year-old G. K. Chesterton describes an ordinary day for him. His descriptions are characteristically wonderful: Out of the starless night of the Uncreated, that was before the stars, a soul begins to grope back to light. It gropes its way through strange, half-lighted chambers of Dreams,Continue reading “Bookish Links — August 2017”
This month, Philip Yancey’s Washington Post op-ed on “the death of reading” caused a lot of buzz. You can read that here. It also inspired some interesting responses, including this one by Cynthia Haven tying Yancey’s ideas into Czesław Miłosz’s idea that we are living in a time of “the complete undoing of essences, of eternalContinue reading “Bookish Links — July 2017”
As promised, here’s the companion to my post on opening lines, this time turning the focus to poetry. John Donne, “The Canonization” For God’s sake, hold your tongue and let me love, Come on, who (besides Samuel Johnson) doesn’t love a beginning like that? It’s short and snappy, it’s to-the-point, and it brings that immediacyContinue reading “A Few Words about First Lines: Poetry Edition”
April, in case you didn’t know, was National Poetry Month. I’m afraid I only remembered that on March 31, so I didn’t have time to prepare much in the way of poetry-related blog posts. So instead, I decided to tweet a poem every day in April. Here’s the full list: April 1: “The Windhover” byContinue reading “National Poetry Month Wrap-Up”
Here’s a fascinating article about how William Shakespeare’s quest for his own coat of arms may help prove his identity. An interview with Ron Padgett, who collaborated with director Jim Jarmusch to write the poems at the center of Jarmusch’s new film Paterson. Here’s something I had never heard of before: W. B. Yeats’s experimentsContinue reading “Bookish Links — January 2017”
If you’ve spent any amount of time around BookTube, you probably know already who Jen Campbell is. In case you don’t, she’s an author, poet, and book blogger based in the UK. Some weeks ago, she posted a video in which she posed this question to her viewers: “What makes a poem ‘good’?” It’s an interesting question,Continue reading “What Makes a Poem “Good”: a Completely Unbiased Investigation”
Because what are weekends for if not for reading beautiful poems? “As kingfishers catch fire” by Gerard Manley Hopkins As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame; As tumbled over rim in roundy wells Stones ring; like each tucked string tells, each hung bell’s Bow swung finds tongue to fling out broad its name; Each mortalContinue reading “A Poem for the Weekend”
Again, thanks to The Oxford Book of English Verse, I found this lovely little thing: “Pied Beauty” by Gerard Manley Hopkins Glory be to God for dappled things – For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow; For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim; Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings; Landscape plotted and pieced –Continue reading “Poem of the Week: “Pied Beauty””