Oct 19 — two long marriages with October anniversaries — a Denise Levertov poem

Friday, October 19  –  “. . . not because mind and memory
falter, but . . . ”

Mid October, a chilly, breath-taking weekend across the whole city at the end of this work week.  Along with emerging autumn colors and glorious skies, we also live within confusing angers, looking out toward a momentous mid-term election now a matter of days away.   There is, though, more on offer than weather and public tensions; today one of Denise Levertov’s delicate poems reminded me that October, for me, comes alive with two marriages. One I have known all my life and one is a friendship of two decades:    my dad died October 12, 1970 and my mom died one week and 25 years later, at age 102.   Last Sunday Barbara Shaffer, who has grieved her husband of 58 years who died the day before my dad,  Bill Shaffer, a Vet and a member of the UAW.  Their daughter Sarah is a peer counselor in San Francisco for Vets who suffer from PTSD.

I found a poem Denise Levertov’s Evening Train.  Some poems look out onto vast realities;  some open into intimate, enduring, resonant love.  That’s today’s “In Love.”  A university engages many sorts of reality.  That’s what we do here.

Best to read this a couple times,  out loud with pauses.

Have a blest Friday in this mid-October week.    Crisp autumn sun and wind gusts;  the sun rides lower in the heavens each day all the way til December’s Solstice.

john sj

Today’s Post   “In Love”

Over gin and tonic (an unusual treat) the ancient poet
haltingly —            not because mind and memory
falter, but because language, now,
weary from so many years
of intense partnership,
comes stiffly to her summons,
with unsure footing —
recounts, for the first time in my hearing, each step
of that graceful sarabande, her husband’s
last days, last minutes, fifteen years ago.

She files her belongings freestyle, jumbled
in plastic bags — poems, old letters, ribbons,
old socks, an empty picture frame;
but keeps her fifty years of marriage wrapped, flawless,
in something we sense and almost see —
diaphanous as those saris one can pass through a wedding ring.

Denise Levertov  1923 – 1997
first Posted on October 19, 2015

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Oct 12 – Denise Levertov “Prayer for Revolutionary Love”

rape & revolutionary love
Posted on October 23, 2013 by

Friday, October 12  “That we endure absence, if need be,
without losing our love for each other.
without closing our doors to the unknown.”

A recent grad called me last night  (i.e., Oct 23, 2013 less than one month since the poetry list’s 1st Post ever)  to talk about a close women friend who had called him a few days before after she was raped by someone she knew. She was the second close friend to open her experience of savage violence — in the world of promising and talented and generous young adults. The first had been his little sister two years before. We talked a while about powerlessness and violence, rage and shame. About grief.

Here’s the invitation by Lori Glenn, faculty  host for an evening about domestic violence that year.   “Please join us for to learn more about dating violence and healthy relationships. We will start with a presentation in Chemistry 114 at 5:30pm. Food will be served. At approximately 7:00pm we will convene in the Kassab Mall to honor victims of all types of domestic violence with a Candlelight Vigil.  Please come!   Bring a friend!   Better yet…bring a date!”

Convening this domestic violence education program years ago can remind our university community that education about attacks on women is not new, not at all.  Neither, though, is the timeless power of great poetry.   I have loved Denise Levertov’s poems for many years before beginning the poetry list 613 posts ago  (n.b. to browse all Denise Levertov poems in the archive blog go to http://sites.udmercy.edu/mission-and-identity/ & search on “Levertov”).  Years ago also, “Revolutionary Love,” became my most deeply loved poem about love between two people.  It still is.  Her strong, wise language can anoint this season of intense conflict about interpersonal sexual violence.

Best to read the poem out loud, with pauses.

Have a blest weekend.

john sj

p.s. On this date in 1980 I sat with, and sometimes held, my father the night he lay dying of pancreatic cancer.   We told each other important things that long night that anoint this date for me year after year.   Two months later I drove a U-Haul from Philly to Motown to begin my faculty contract at what was then “U of D.”


Today’s Post – “Prayer for Revolutionary Love”

That a woman not ask a man to leave meaningful work to follow her
That a man not ask a woman to leave meaningful work to follow him.

That no one try to put Eros in bondage
But that no one put a cudgel in the hands of Eros.
That our loyalty to one another and our loyalty to our work
not be set in false conflict.

That our love for each other give us love for each other’s work
That our love for each other’s work give us love for one another.
That our love for each other’s work give us love for one another.
That our love for each other give us love for each other’s work.

That our love for each other, if need be,
give way to absence. And the unknown.
That we endure absence, if need be,
without losing our love for each other.
Without closing our doors to the unknown.

Denise Levertov
b. October 1923  d. December 1997

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Oct 5 – John Keats — 31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821 “To Autumn”

Friday 5, 2018     “Seasons of mists and mellow fruitfulness”

One of the list’s readers last year about this time responded to an all-time favorite autumn poem from Gerard Manley Hopkins – – who pretty regularly knocks me flat with wonder. The email contained John Keats’ early 19th century romantic poem without comment.  With Keats’ work, s/he reminded me as list readers often do, of a poet I had not noticed for a while. No scolding either, as in “how can you have overlooked Keats”!   Since then, Keats works on my imagination this time of year.  I’m in his debt for a near perfect read in times of mid-autumn blustering East/North East winds and rain.   Best to read “to autumn” out loud with pauses.

I am writing this Friday post on Thursday, in Denver for Regis University’s trustee meeting.   Not very blustery today along the Front Range of the Rockies.  I have some open time today but tomorrow the board will keep me busy until Delta takes me home in the late afternoon.


Have a blest weekend.

john sj


Today’s Post “To Autumn” John Keats

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of spring? Ay, Where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821


Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Oct 1 – Mary Oliver returns

Monday Oct 1, 2018  — Mary Oliver “there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own,”
1st  Posted on October 6, 2017 by mission-and-identity

“One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting their bad advice”

Readers often surprise me with stories about a poem or a poet or self stories about insight and decision.  Sometimes the stories take me back to September 2013 when this list began during some hard times in the city and on campus.  Those hard times became an intuition that led to this list, c. 600 posts ago.  The original wording appears at the top of the archive blog where all previous posts appear.  I re-read it now and then to recall  those origins.  Check it out.  http://sites.udmercy.edu/mission-and-identity/

Best to read Mary Oliver out loud, with pauses.  She makes good company for troubled times like the present.

Monday morning, alive with an autumn downpour.  Have a blest day.

john sj


Today’s Post “The Journey”

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice —
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voice behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do —
determined to save
the only life that you could save.

Mary Oliver

September 10, 1935

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Sept 29 – Longing for Home

September 29, 2018– two poets — one Muslim, one Chaldean Catholic

Dunya Mikhail
“Yesterday, I lost a country”

Warsan Shire
“dear god
i come from two countries
one is thirsty
the other is on fire
both need water.”

Like many people I know around the U.S.,  I was mesmerized yesterday by the outpouring of stories, more often by women, often too by men, often told for the first time, of their abuse and the terror they have carried for many years.  Over the decades of my adult years,   friends and sometimes  women and men new to me risked telling me of wounds that needed a listener who would not use them as property.  Dr. Ford moved me deeply by risking her storytelling to a world of hearers.  This morning, the time I try to imagine what poem wants me to notice it and send it to the “Work Day, Hard Time” reader list, two poets came to mind.  Both have learned the wounds of the world as immigrant women. As I learn to make a home for Dr. Ford’s stories, it helps me to read Dunya Mikhail and Warsan Shire again, slowly and aloud.

Have a blest day.

John sj

p.s. Today our university begins Homecoming weekend.   Our presence in Detroit, a city of great beauty and many wounds has made a home for me for 37 years. I am looking forward to seeing alums and listening to some of their stories too.

Today’s post # 1:  “I Was in a Hurry”  –    Dunya Mikhail

Yesterday I lost a country.
I was in a hurry,
and didn’t notice when it fell from me
like a broken branch from a forgetful tree.

Please, if anyone passes by
and stumbles across it,
perhaps in a suitcase
open to the sky,
or engraved on a rock
like a gaping wound,
or wrapped
in the blankets of emigrants,
or canceled
like a losing lottery ticket,
or helplessly forgotten
in Purgatory,
or rushing forward without a goal
like the questions of children,
or rising with the smoke of war,
or rolling in a helmet on the sand,
or stolen in Ali Baba’s jar,
or disguised in the uniform of a policeman
who stirred up the prisoners
and fled,
or squatting in the mind of a woman
who tries to smile,
or scattered like the dreams
of new immigrants in America.

If anyone stumbles across it,
return it to me, please.
Please return it, sir.
Please return it, madam.
It is my country…
I was in a hurry
when I lost it yesterday.

“I Was in a Hurry” by Dunya Mikhail, translated by Elizabeth Winslow, from The War Works Hard

1965 – Baghdad, Iraq – lives in metro Detroit


Today’s post # 2   “what they did yesterday afternoon”

they set my aunts house on fire
i cried the way women on tv do
folding at the middle
like a five pound note.
i called the boy who use to love me
tried to ‘okay’ my voice
i said hello
he said warsan, what’s wrong, what’s happened?

i’ve been praying,
and these are what my prayers look like;
dear god
i come from two countries
one is thirsty
the other is on fire
both need water.

later that night

i held an atlas in my lap
ran my fingers across the whole world
and whispered
where does it hurt?

it answered

1988 – Born in Kenya to Somali parents

Warsan Shire

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Sept 26 — G. M. Hopkins — “The Caged Skylark”

Posted on November 27, 2017 by mission-and-identity

Wednesday September 26   —  “Man’s mounting spirit in his bone-house, mean house, dwells”

Sun after an epic deluge reminds me of things I love about living in the heart of the Great Lakes, from torrents to an afternoon that invites me to look out my open window and taste the stillness that flows from beauty in the sky.  Still, we have not yet turned the corner of a work week that can wear us ordinary people down,   half way into a work week sometimes wears, even grinds.   Perhaps that’s what brought G. M. Hopkins to this metaphor: a skylark’s wild explosions of energy and what happens when all that free spirit gets caged — skylark caged, a human being caged, “day-laboring-out life’s age.”

The cage does not define the lark, nor the daily burdens define the person.  A reminder:  it helps when reading Hopkins, to give his word play a practice run until you get the cadences right and until you give his word choices a chance startle your imagination and make you smile.

Three good surprises today?  Sure.   Have a blest week.


john sj


Today’s Post:  “The Caged Skylark”

As a dare-gale skylark scanted in a dull cage

Man’s mounting spirit in his bone-house, mean house, dwells—

That bird beyond the remembering his free fells;

This in drudgery, day-labouring-out life’s age.


Though aloft on turf or perch or poor low stage,

Both sing sometímes the sweetest, sweetest spells,

Yet both droop deadly sómetimes in their cells

Or wring their barriers in bursts of fear or rage.


Not that the sweet-fowl, song-fowl, needs no rest—

Why, hear him, hear him babble and drop down to his nest,

But his own nest, wild nest, no prison.


Man’s spirit will be flesh-bound when found at best,

But uncumbered: meadow-down is not distressed

For a rainbow footing it nor he for his bónes rísen.

G. M. Hopkins, sj   1844-1889

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Sept 24 — Mary Tobacco & Joy Harjo

Monday, September 24  —

“Talking with the Sun” & “The high plains of Pine Ridge, SD”

This weekend’s early autumn sun & crisp air.  You can see by the way people walk around campus that breathing is easier these days.  Lots of smiles for this respite from late summer’s hot damp stretch.   For me, today’s morning stillness carries the tastes of the weekend in Detroit with Mary Tobacco, a soul friend of 50 years, who came to savor Detroit:  tastes of energy all over downtown; some great vegetarian food near the Art Museum just off Woodward;  letting the majestic power of the Detroit River offer us stillness and the company of all sorts of women and men and kids loving the sun; even, on Saturday some improbable whitecaps from autumn winds that ruffled our hair;   lots of young people on the new scooters that seem to be taking the country by storm.

Did we love the massive river more, or Belle Isle’s wedding cake fountain — now restored to its century old elegance — dancing in the late summer sun, inviting romantic pictures and joy-drenched laughter?  Mary lives on Pine Ridge, SD c. 300 miles east of the Rocky Mountains.  The “High Plains,” as that land is sometimes called, offers semi-arid, dry spells punctuated with spectacular hail and thunder storms, a land where one can look at the Black Hills, c. 70 miles away to the West and watch thunder storms sweep the prairie.  Time along the Detroit River and on Belle Isle offered Mary as much astonishing surprise as massive thunder storms on Pine Ridge astonish me.   I took this shot on June 19, 2010 about 4 miles from where Mary and her children live on a steep canyon slope.

Highway 18,  Pine Ridge, SD  sunset with a storm front

Mary, a Lakota,  is a friend of the Creek poet Joy Harjo.   They share a love of the land and sky, an intimate understanding of the beauty and the wearing fatigue of poverty so often marked with deep racism but also with the mystical surprises that close family ties offer.   This morning, I was listening for a voice I had not heard recently.   I found Joy Harjo, soul friend and strong poet.  Two years ago, she sent me a new book, Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings.   On September 2, 2016, I found my first poem there, “Talking with the Sun.”  How does a grandmother carry her fourth granddaughter out into the sun on a rainy New York Times Square morning?    You could read the poem with pauses.   Or you may imagine driving along that highway as the sunset shows off a front being pushed East by the storm’s energy.

Have a blest week,


john sj

P.S. Happy Mercy Day!  Mercy Day is the anniversary of the opening of the first “House of Mercy” in 1827 in Dublin, Ireland.

Today’ Post   Joy Harjo  “Talking with the Sun”

I believe in the sun.
In the tangle of human failures of fear, greed, and
forgetfulness, the sun gives me clarity.
When explorers first encountered my people, they called us
heathens, sun worshippers.
They didn’t understand that the sun is a relative, and
illuminates our path on this earth.

After dancing all night in a circle we realize that we are a
part of a larger sense of stars and planets dancing with us
When the sun rises at the apex of the ceremony, we are
There is no mistaking this connection, though Walmart
might be just down the road.
Humans are vulnerable and rely on the kindnesses of the
earth and sun; we exist together in a sacred field of

Our earth is shifting.  We can all see it.
I hear from my Inuit and Yupik relatives up north that
everything has changed.  It’s so hot; there is not enough
Animals are confused. Ice is melting.

The quantum physicists have it right; they are beginning to
think like Indians: everything is connected dynamically
at an intimate level.
When you remember this, then the current wobble of the
earth makes sense.  How much more oil can be drained,
Without replacement; without reciprocity?

I walked out of a hotel room just off Times Square at dawn
to find the sun.
It was the fourth morning since the birth of my fourth
This was the morning I was to present her to the sun, as a
relative, as one of us.  It was still dark, overcast as I walked
through Times Square.
I stood beneath a twenty-first century totem pole of symbols
of multinational corporations, made of flash and neon.

The sun rose up over the city but I couldn’t see it amidst the
Though I was not at home, bundling up the baby to carry
her outside,
I carried this newborn girl within the cradleboard of my
I held her up and presented her to the sun, so she would be
recognized as a relative,
So that she won’t forget this connection, this promise,
So that we all remember, the sacredness of life.

Joy Harjo

Mary with two of her children near her home in canyon country.

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Sept 21 – My Dad, born 1907, would be 111 today

Friday, September 21

After chilly rain yesterday, today’s morning sun tells news of autumn on its way,  my favorite season, and at the ending of this work week, three soul friends come visiting.  Merritt “Roe” Smith,  my longest kinsman of the academy comes from MIT along with Dave Lucsco whom Roe recommended and I hired as the second and final managing editor of Technology and Culture.  Now he works at Auburn.  Our work connected us over years of passion for scholarly excellence and ripened into deep resilient shared memories.  Later today, after Roe and Dave have each headed home,  Mary Tobacco, whom I’ve known longer than either, known and loved as I did her mother Curley before she died of cancer late in the last century, took matters in her own hands for some face time this summer.  My surgery kept me from time on Pine Ridge this year.  She will spend the weekend as a guest in our house.

How to take in such depth of beauty resilient over decades of shared commitments —  joy and grief, fatigue and energy and gratitude for deep beauty?  Poetry helps.  Today, I am inviting David Whyte to talk with the four of us along with the 2400 other readers of the “Work Day/hard time” list.   Best to read “The Journey” out loud, with pauses.   Have a blest weekend, maybe pausing to taste the approach of Autumn.

john st sj


Today’s Post  –  David Whyte “The Journey”

Above the mountains

the geese turn into
the light again

Painting their
black silhouettes
on an open sky.

Sometimes everything
has to be
inscribed across
the heavens

so you can find
the one line
already written
inside you.

Sometimes it takes
a great sky
to find that

first, bright
and indescribable
wedge of freedom
in your own heart.

Sometimes with
the bones of the black
sticks left when the fire
has gone out

someone has written
something new
in the ashes of your life.

You are not leaving.
Even as the light fades quickly now,
you are arriving.

from House of Belonging by David Whyte

p.s. When we buried my Dad in 1980, I had never known grief so raw.   Dad’s death came 3 weeks after his birthday just after he had gone jaundiced from the cancer that took him on October 12.  I held him most of his last night, we told each other important truths that lived between us. Today, his beauty and the grace he awakened in me back then keep my company.

We used a passage of scripture for his funeral:
“Love tenderly,
Act justly,
And walk humbly before your God.”

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Sept 19 “In Love” Denise Levertov

Wednesday, September 19  —  Connie de Biase, her birthday month,  19  months after we buried her

I found myself writing a paragraph contemplation of Connie on her first birthday since leaving us.   Now, one birthday later,  Connie infuses my imagination;  I still love her last year’s contemplation/celebration.

Connie in our 4 decades of kinship partnered with me in our mutual commitment to noticing.   When I miss her most is on Saturday mornings when I am home and able to Sabbath the day, especially driving into center city to buy community bread.  I used to call her while driving back home with fresh food in two bags in the back seat and we would talk about the condition of our inner lives.  Our last year or more were more brave and sad as Connie recognized her growing diminishment and her grief at losing the life in Madison that she loved and lived so gracefully.  Talking with her was part of that inner movement,  Ignatius calls these “inner disturbances” and counsels a habit of paying attention to them whether consolations or desolations.   Noticing.

originally posted January 23, 2017

Perhaps this Denise Levertov poem came to mind because I flew into JFK Saturday, braved Long Island’s expressways with their too tight turns matched by slightly-too-narrow lanes, to spend time with a lifelong soul friend, Sr. Consuela de Biase, csj.   Connie has become frail, like the ancient poet in today’s poem.  She misses nothing, I realized, but you have to lean in close to hear;  worn with fatigue, she whispers, and pauses to breathe.  We visited three times  (c. 90 minutes,  25 minutes, and 4 or 5 when we said goodbye before I headed back to JFK early Sunday).  I love it that the 40 mile drive on the parkway was wearing;  it reminds me that those miles and our 3 conversations are of a piece with decades of mutual listening, the fabric of Connie’s life.

In today’s poem Denise Levertov writes of an ancient poet whose frail strengths remind me of Connie.   This beautiful early autumn day might tempt you to open your window or step outside so you can read “In Love” bathed in beauty, breathing a little too.

Have a blest day,


johns sj


Today’s Post   “In Love”

Over gin and tonic (an unusual treat) the ancient poet
haltingly —            not because mind and memory
falter, but because language, now,
weary from so many years
of intense partnership,
comes stiffly to her summons,
with unsure footing —
recounts, for the first time in my hearing, each step
of that graceful sarabande, her husband’s
last days, last minutes, fifteen years ago.

She files her belongings freestyle, jumbled
in plastic bags — poems, old letters, ribbons,
old socks, an empty picture frame;
but keeps her fifty years of marriage wrapped, flawless,
in something we sense and almost see —
diaphanous as those saris one can pass through a wedding ring.

Denise Levertov  1923 – 1997

Connie laughing,  smiling,  contemplative  August 2006

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment

Sept 14 – Jim Janda – “Crying for a Vision”

Friday, September 14  “ to cry for a vision
is a sacred task”

The Lakota expression “hanblechia” means “he or she cries out for a vision.” It is the name of one of the most sacred Lakota rituals.  It begins with a sweat bath, singing begging prayers as the bodies of the people in the sweat lodge welcome supersaturated steam from igneous rocks,  which won’t explode when they have been fire heated to deep red; the people in the dark lodge have broken a sweat before the singer pours the first dipper of water onto them.  The lodge has the shape of a half circle, the singer does not pour the first water until the door flap is closed and the people have all taken a position sitting cross legged and naked.  In that posture the roof of the lodge is only a few inches from the top of your head while you have bent forward to be close to the red hot stones which are a few inches from your face.

When the one seeking a vision finishes the sweat, s/he lets the holyman lead them to a place to pray alone, sometimes for 4 days of complete fasting, crying for a vision to help you, “a pitiful human” receive a vision to live by.

It sometimes occurs to me that this ritual of begging for a vision can make a powerful prayer in these times when anger and danger and fear want to cloud our sense of our sacred lives.   Jim Janda, a mystic poet and once a mystic Jesuit, wrote this poem out of his awareness of  “hanblechia”  Best to read the poem out loud, with pauses.

Have a blest weekend,

john sj


Today’s Post

To cry for a
is a sacred

after hearing
a holyman
after taking
a sweat bath
with sage and
sweet grass

one must climb a
mountain alone—

here a song
may be heard
here a vision
may be given
here a dance
may be learned—

one must then
the mountain

to sing the
to live the
to begin the

J Janda


Jim Janda   d. August, 2010

Jim Janda lived as a mystic pilgrim for most of his 74 years. He died August 7, 2010 in Salt Lake City, a priest of that diocese since 1996. Jim also lived for a quarter century as a Jesuit which is when we met. Jim was “well known for his gentle and generous heart. . . . During his life he wrote and published a series of short religious stories for children, school plays and books of poetry.” So reads his obituary in the Salt Lake Tribune. The obit is accurate, as was the stated cause of his death, emphysema; I think he smoked too much. I can’t remember ever visiting with Jim without feeling bathed in wisdom and tenderness, and in his awareness of how deep grief runs in human beings, right there along with whimsy.

The Tribune’s evocation of “stories for children, school plays and books of poetry . . .” does not even hint at the flint-hard prose and fine-tuned ironies that throb and flow through his poems. Today’s post comes from the 1970s when Jim lived on the Lakota Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota. Like many of his poems, “The Town in March” is homey and close to the grass without flinching from pain.

Jim Janda reminds me of Joy Harjo. I am glad I thought to pull his book off my poetry shelf.


{from the April 30, 2018 poetry post “The Town in March”}

Posted in Mission and Identity | Leave a comment