Chapter

Quick-Eyed Love Draws Near

Thomas H. Troeger

in Wonder Reborn

Published in print June 2010 | ISBN: 9780195398885
Published online September 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780199866236 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195398885.003.0004
Quick-Eyed Love Draws Near

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The author, drawing on Wallace Stevens, defines “poet” as any man or woman of imagination. Rather than understanding poetry as the rarefied domain of the literati, poetry is viewed as language that can engage the visionary capacities of preachers and their listeners. The chapter examines the kinship between poetry and prayer, particularly the invocatory power of poetry and the poetic character of primary religious language as discussed by Andrew Greeley. By blending dream and reason, poetry can give expression to the interfusion of transrational and rational elements that characterizes the state of people’s hearts and minds when they are in deep prayer. The chapter includes three sample sermons based on poems of George Herbert and three others based on the poems of the feminist Christian socialist Alice Meynell, a Roman Catholic laywoman whose work needs to be reclaimed as an important voice from the past.

Keywords: dream; feminist; Herbert; imagination; Meynell; poetry; prayer; reason; visionary; voice

Chapter.  13140 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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