Taking Root In The Heart


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A new collection from the best and most prolific poets published in the Christian Century over the past twenty-five years.

The 34 poets whose work appears defy the narcissistic tendencies of so much contemporary poetry. They do not necessarily express a particular orthodoxy, but they do connect with something larger than the self. Theirs is poetry that attempts to revitalize language, especially theological language. It is poetry that attempts to upset the usual modes of expression and offers up new angles of vision, especially in regard to biblical stories. For most of the poets–though not all by any means–Jesus is the Word made flesh, and the Incarnation is the paradigm as poets attempt to enflesh the abstract, make the spirit tangible, and put into words the unsayable. Poets have a way of taking on what utterly cannot be done. And those are the poems that should appear in a journal of religious news and reflection.

The poetic approaches and styles of the work of these poets are immensely varied, from the masterful narratives of Sydney Lea to the finely wrought lyrics of Charles Hughes to the always edgy and surprising poems of Bill Stadick to the most imagistic and prolific work of Luci Shaw to the provocative poems of Christian Wiman. Then there are the superb sonnets of Gracia Grindal and Angela Alaimo O’Donnell and the compelling explorations of the deep spirituality of the everyday that comprise Tania Runyan’s vision.

The poems in the journal often explore biblical themes, doctrinal issues, or theological conundrums. But many of the poems that appear in the Christian Century present human experience or encounters with the natural world that do not seem on the surface “religious” but reveal a deep humanity at the core. What defines all of these poems is a commitment to communicating with readers seeking truth, beauty, and authenticity.

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SKU (ISBN): 9781640607033
ISBN10: 164060703X
Jill Baumgaertner
Binding: Trade Paper
Published: March 2023
Publisher: Paraclete Press


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