A Catholic Poet

Paul Mariani, the author of numerous books of poetry as well as a biography of Gerard Manley Hopkins, served as America's poetry editor from 2000 to 2006. He is now a University Professor of English at Boston College. In the April 25 issue Mariani describes his collaboration with the actor and director James Franco on an upcoming film about the poet Hart Crane. Here we offer a selection of Professor Mariani's writings for America:

Poems

"Hopkins in Ireland," January 3, 2005

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"Shadow of the Father," December 23, 2002

"Death & Transfiguration," July 29, 2002

"Nine One One," December 10, 2011

Essays and Reviews

"St. Joseph," April 21, 2003

On Joseph Brodsky, December 17, 2001

On Seamus Heaney, April 23, 2001

"When Poets Write Prose," April 23, 2001

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Eileen Gould
7 years 6 months ago
Any mention of Gerard Manley Hopkins will catch my eye.   Three years ago, three other ladies and I started a monthly Tea & Poetry.   I was the only one who who had not gone to college, knew next to nothing about poetry, but my best friend from Jamaica, who had been much influenced by the wonderful Irish Jesuit priests there, was an English major.   She can recite from memory a treasure trove of poetry.   Poetry was not my "cup of tea" but she influenced me so much that I had the trepitude to be the first presenter....on Gerard Manley Hopkins.   I start from the top!!!   Three years into our T&P, GMH is favorite.    Poetry has taught me to "see."  

This morning on MPR, Garrison Keillor gave his usual Almanac excerpt, this time a poem by May Swenson, "Daffodils." in which her delightful metaphor was telephones.   Just this week I had admired a new neighbor's daffodils marching all in a single file row.   Suddenly, I saw myself in my first job, at 17, during the war in 1943.   I had a telephone which perhaps today would not be recognized.   But my telephone was ... a daffodil.

Children should be introduced to poetry at a very young age.   It teaches us to "see."   If they can master two languages before five (as with immigrant children), think what they can do with poetry!

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