Explore aspects of St. Francis’ spirit contained in the nature poetry of Gerard Manley Hopkins through Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity Sister Kathleen Murphy’s reflection on a recent class. Next ‘inscape‘ (enjoy a glimpse of why God created something) Hopkins-esque images of photographers Fred Gaber, Mark Kolter, Priscilla Thomas, Sister Elena Gonzales and Hubblesite Gallery.
What do birds, unconventional words and metaphors in herds have in common? Gerard Manley Hopkins! Several of us were guided through the treasures of this Jesuit poet during a 2 week course on the Franciscan influence present in Hopkins’ poems. Sister Renita Tadych did a masterful job of bringing together the theology and poetry of Francis, the labyrinthian philosophy of Duns Scotus and the faith-faceted poetry of Hopkins. Discussing, analyzing and sharing insights on various poems was a truly enriching experience. As Sister Regina Rose Pearson said, “You can’t just read Hopkins. You have to pray Hopkins.” So true!
We often hear bits of his work or find it on greeting cards, but the depth of his expression as he journeyed with the Lord holds inspiration that’s often overlooked. What was the best poem? Who could choose? I love his nature images, but I think one of my new favorite lines comes from “The Wreck of the Deutschland“, saying of God, “…For I greet him the days I meet him, and bless when I understand.” What a thought to carry into each day marked with prayer! Thank you Sister Renita and class members for such an enriching class!
View these Hopkins-esque images:
Fred Gaber shares this time lapse image:
Note: Holy Spirit window from Sacred Heart Parish in Reedsburg, WI,is cropped from a larger frame of the Holy Spirit showing up above Noah’s ark. Rainbow is visible on the side.
Any Hopkins-esque thoughts?