The National Catholic Review


  • November 3, 2014
    Wood sways and mutters; palsied shutters bang.
    The call has come. Stripped of starlight, night
    dwindles to gritty lavender and gray;
    mad jags of wind keep drowning out the surf.
    We dress, then slog through beach plums to the bay.
  • October 20, 2014
    Autumn is the time of year
    when God’s invisible hand
    paints the leaves
    in broad strokes
    of color,
    then plucks them off
    one by one.
  • September 15, 2014
    and all floating implements
    star studded saints
    and gemstone dreams
    moon smoke      incense
    squandered speech
    hearts that have wandered
    strangers squinting at the sky
  • Sept. 1-8, 2014
    You fold this sweater the way a moth
    builds halls from the darkness it needs
    to go on living—safe inside this closet
    a family is gathering for dinner, cashmere
    with oil, some garlic, a little salt, lit
  • July 21-28, 2014
    I speak bones to you in the morning—
    hollow, fragile, ordained frameworks,
    their marrow winnowed by earth time.
    I hear emptiness in my pleas for health,
    forgiveness, prosperity. Echoes ossify
  • July 7-14, 2014
    One February morning, pause
    between kitchen and dining room
    to weep at Belle and Sebastian
    singing about God. The cold is good
    for maple syrup, makes sap run,
    you aren’t sure how, or why this pretty pop
  • June 9-16, 2014
    There stood by me this night the angel of God
           Acts 27:23
    I have no fear of storms since I heard His voice—
    my Accuser crying out of the sun.
    While I am chained in the shivering hold,
    the others cower and bleat to Baal.
    But no fury can last. Light finds a way—
    it streams through cracks in the throttled planks,
    and illuminates the silk rigging
    of a small...
  • June 9-16, 2014

    After the murder of Julius Caesar in Shakespeare’s play, Brutus appeals to the charged, fearful crowd in a speech written in prose. He ends up getting his point across. People can see his side and why Caesar’s ambition was a threat to their freedom. But Mark Antony immediately follows him with his iconic speech composed in the rhythms and contours of verse—“ambition should be made of sterner stuff.” It blows the first speech out of the water. Antony stirs the...

  • May 26-June 2, 2014
    What milk      what honey you were promised gall       in Zion
    Kiss the weeping wall’s cheek       love       sows salt in Zion
    It’s the recurring dream       of all       who throw down roots here
    You’re holding a shovel       amid a thousand       falling Zions
  • May 12, 2014
    I hung my soul to dry on a fence post near the property line,
    Just out of sight.
    Days passed, rains came; it stiffened
    Small black spots grew bit by bit
    Then it was past rescue...