Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I never read any of Joyce Kilmer's poetry. My closest contact with him was the James Cagney/Pat O'Brien movie: The Fighting 69th. Someone played him in this movie, as he was in this regiment and died fighting in WWI . But in From James J. Daly, SJ's A Cheerful Ascetic there is an essay on Joyce Kilmer-convert to Catholicism and excerpts from some of his letters. Here's a letter which caught my eye:

I need some stricter discipline, I think, and it's hard to get it. I enjoy my confessor's direction very much; he's a fine old Irishman with no nonsense about him. But I need to be called a fool, I need to have some conceit and sophistication knocked out of me. I suppose you think this is "enthusiasm"-that much-heralded danger of converts. Perhaps it is, but I don't think so. I know I'm glad I live two miles from the church, because it's excellent for a lazy person like myself to be made to exert himself for religion. And I wish I had a stern medieval confessor-the sort one reads about in anti-Catholic books-who would inflict real penances. The saying of Hail Marys and Our Fathers is no penance, it's a delight.

Read that last line again.


We have now lost three piglets; the one we were nursing took a turn for the better on Saturday morning and then just died Saturday evening. And then yesterday it looks like a little piglet was the victim of being laid on. As I said before, its not how many are born, but how many are weaned.

Oremus pro invicem!


Anonymous said...

Jim, this is one of my favorite poems by Joyce Kilmer:

Citizen of the World

No longer of Him be it said
"He hath no place to lay His head."

In every land a constant lamp
Flames by His small and mighty camp.

There is no strange and distant place
That is not gladdened by His face.

And every nation kneels to hail
The Splendour shining through Its veil.

Cloistered beside the shouting street,
Silent, He calls me to His feet.

Imprisoned for His love of me
He makes my spirit greatly free.

And through my lips that uttered sin
The King of Glory enters in.


Jim Dorchak said...

My grandmother loved Kilmers Trees.

Wanted you to know that Lori cam home from the surgery cancer free, with a 99% chance it will not return.

Prayers work

Jim Dorchak

Jim Curley said...

Jim- Great! We've been praying for you all. Deo Gratias!