Poems and Essays

Poetry of all kinds, ages, and cultures is at the heart of my life. Humanity has only so many universals, and verbal art made of rhythmic language is one of them. From Allen Ginsberg to Yogeshvara, from Saint-John Perse to Beowulf, from The Iliad to Chaucer and Langland, I cannot keep away from the visions of human life, tragedy, and play the great poets have given to the world. And that’s why I make poems too.

My first collection of poems, Sunk in Your Shipwreck: A Palmer Stammering, is a kind of verse pilgrimage thru different parts of my life, different parts of the world, different cultures and religions. You can check it out here.

My latest verse book project is a verse translation of the Old English Advent Lyrics. O Shining Light: Old English Meditations for Advent and Christmastide makes available a stand-alone edition and translation of the tenth-century poem, an introduction and commentary written with my wife Mamie, and visual art by Daniel Mitsui and the Gracewing team.

My edition of Dame Gertrude More’s Poems and Counsels on Prayer and Contemplation makes available the verse and shorter prose works of a seventeenth-century English nun who was instrumental in reviving the English Benedictine Congregation. Her poems are simple but profound, and her prose is surprising and intense for a cloistered woman in the Early Modern period. A genuine contemplative. I am very glad to get these texts out to a broader readership.

My book In the Bosom of the Father: The Collected Poems of a Benedictine Mystic (Resource Publications, 2018) is comprised of my verse translations of Swami Abhishiktananda’s (aka Dom Henri Le Saux) French poetry. This is the first time Swami Abhishiktananda’s poems have appeared in one volume in any language and contains a number of poems and sections of poems never before published.

My first chapbook, Lofsangas: Poems Old and New, was published by Franciscan UP (2015) and consists primarily of verse translations of Old English poems (available on Amazon). My second chapbook, begalende (2022) is a similar retrieval but this time of metrical “charms” from several dead Germanic languages.

My translations of medieval English verse and original poems also appear semi-regularly in the Benedictine magazine, Spirit & Life.

I’ve been writing more popular essays as well, mostly revolving around contemplation, the liturgy, the natural world and our relationship with it, etc.


O Shining Light: Old English Meditations for Advent and Christmastide. Leominster, Herefordshire: Gracewing, 2020.

Dame Gertude More. Poems and Counsels on Prayer and Contemplation. Leominster, Herefordshire: Gracewing Ltd., 2020.

Sunk in Your Shipwreck: A Palmer Stammering. Eugene, OR: Resource Publications,    2018.

In the Bosom of the Father: The Collected Poems of a Benedictine Mystic. Foreword by Fr. Cyprian Consiglio. Afterword by Swami Atmananda Udasin. Eugene, OR: Resource Publications, 2018.


begalende. Ghost City Press (2022).

Lofsangas: Poems Old and New. Franciscan University Press (2015).

Original Poems, Literary Nonfiction, and Short Story

Freude: On Hearing Beethoven’s 9th Symphony after a Two-Year Pandemic Delay.” North American Anglican (May 2023).

redwood lune” and “the night heron calls.” Ballast Journal 1.2 (2023).

haight pome.” The Crank (Winter 2023).

“To a Whale Bobbing Rhythmically in the Surf.” boats against the current 1 (2022).

Three Excerpts.” Adversus Press (July 2022).

For My Father.” Wild Roof Journal (July 2022).

On First Concert at the Bradley Symphony Center, Milwaukee.” The Brazen Head (June 2022).

On Free East Village Organ Concerts in September.Paddler Press (Spring 2022).

On Having a Daughter.” Magpie Literary Journal (Winter 2022).

on being the toothfairy” and “One Night in Boulder.” Better than Starbucks (Feb 2022).

the night.” the broken spine, angels and dogs poetry project series (Jan 20222).

On Reading the BIography of Henry I: A Triolet.” Grand Little Things (Dec 2021).

Bogquilt.” Foxglove Journal (Dec 2021).

On Picking a Spotted Touch-Me-Not.” Dappled Things, Mary Queen of Angels (2021).

The Lower Narrows.” Solum Journal 2 (2021).

Baxter’s Hollow.” Macrina Magazine 8 (August 2021).

Sacred Heart Shrine.Macrina Magazine 8 (August 2021).

To the Milwaukee, Downtown.” riverbed review 3 (August 2021).

Old Growth: Cudahy Woods, 2020.” Saint Katherine Review (July 2021).

Deer Camp.” Marquette Literary Review (2021).

Sketch for Desert Fathers.” Bez & Co. (April 2021).

June Sketch.” The Solitary Plover (Winter 2021).

De nominibus.” Amethyst Review (February 2021).

Morning Snow.” Green Ink Poetry (January 2021).

Meskonsing.” Amethyst Review (October 2020).

On the Year’s First Compost.” Cabinet of Heed 29 (2020).

On Knowledge and Love.” Amethyst Review (October 2020).

“A Pentecost Sonnet” and “Multi ex discipulis ejus.” Spirit & Life 116:1 (2020).

Birth Imagined from a Different Room,” “God Lives on the Lower East Side,” and “Dawn Breaks on the Rock, or Der Abgrundskinder.” Marquette Literary Review 12 (2018).

“On Reading Jack Kerouac’s Big Sur Again after Sixteen Years” Schuylkill Valley Journal 45 (2017).

“Porridge in the Pot.” Haiku Journal 51 (2017).

“Dinner Outside Time in Killarney.” Foliate Oak (Dec 2016).

“Agaric.” Poydras Review (Sept 2016).

“Everyday my heart.” Haiku Journal 47 (2016).

“Our Lady of Perpetual Help.” The Penwood Review (Spring 2016).

“Confessions of an Old English Poetry Reader.” Marquette U Literary Review 10 (2016).

“A Fountain in Springtime.” Maruqette U Literary Review 10 (2016).

“The Relics of St. Anthony’s Tongue and Vocal Chords.” Marquette U Literary Review 10 (2016).

“Bascom Hill.” Illya’s Honey (Winter 2015).

“Nocturne.” Poetry Quarterly (2015).

“I Sit Smiling in a Basement Office.” Three Line Poems (2015).

In Hiezechihelem.” St. Austin Review (2015).

“Living Alone in North Bay.” Poetry Quarterly (2015).

“Tea Poems.” Bijou Poetry Review (2015).

“Summer Lingers” and “Autumn Gales.” The Rotary Dial 19 (2014).

“A Sonnet for the Poet Cynwulf.” Dappled Things 9.3 (2014).

“Interlude.” Vine Leaves 10 (2014).

Peruvianus.” Euphony Spring (2014).

“The Life of St. Petroc.” PILGRIM (2013).

“St. Levan’s Well: A Triolet.” Dappled Things 6.4 (2011).

Verse Translations

An Early Poem on St. Benedict.Spirit & Life 117:2 (Summer 2021).

Helgi Hundingbane’s Kviða.” Exchanges (Fall 2020).

A Journey Galdor.” Trinity House Review (2020).

“The Ruin.” Presence 4 (2020).

“The Blessed Sacrament” and “A Prayer before the Blessed Sacrament.” Spirit & Life 113.2 (2017).

Truth: A Ballade of Good Counsel.” St. Katherine’s Review 5.1 (2017).

“I Ought to Weep.” Spirit & Life 111.6 (2016).

“Translations from the Proverbs of Chaucer.” Main Street Rag 21.1 (2016).

“Grieving for Mary.” Spirit & Life. 111.5 (2016).

In Praise of Wine: from the Middle English of John Lydgate, OSB.” Illya’s Honey (Winter 2015).

“A Hymn to the Cross” and “The Wells of Christ’s Wounds.” Spirit & Life 110.6 (2015).

Nobility: A Moral Ballade by Geoffrey Chaucer.” The Rotary Dial 21 (2014).

The Child Jesus to Mary, the Rose: A Ballade by John Lydgate, OSB.” Spirit & Life 110.4 (2014).

“Almsgiving: A translation from the tenth century Exeter Book.” Dappled Things 9.3 (2014).


Swami Abhishiktananda and the Psalms.” DIMMID Jul-Dec (2023). (Special commemoration of 50 years since Swamiji’s mahasamadhi)

Bede Griffiths and the Divine Office.” New Camaldoli Hermitage Newsletter Lent/Easter (2023).

“We Are the Dreamer: Earth and Body in Times of Plague.” Pt. 1 & Pt. 2. Macrina Magazine (Nov 2022).

The Devil Gets the Hook.” Spirit & Life (117:6 (Mar-Apr 2022): 3-5.

Looking on the One We Have Pierced.” Spirit & Life (117.3 (Sept/Oct 2021): 6-8. 

Blessed Itala Mela: Mystic, Laywoman, Oblate.” Paraclete Press (June 2021).

Advent—the Long Surprise.” deep down things, dappledthings.org, November, 2020.

“Monasticism and the Problems of Big Tech.” The Windhover 24.2 (2020).

Catholicism Is Not the Latin Church.” deep down things, dappledthings.org, August, 2020.

The Necessity of Long Form Art.” deep down things, dappledthings.org, June 12, 2020.

Sacred Spaces: A Visit to Wisconsin’s Man Mound.Commonweal, commonwealmagazine.org, May 17, 2020.

Expectant Waiting.” Commonweal, commonwealmagazine.org, Dec 14, 2019.

Breathing with Both Lungs: East and West Together.Spirit & Life Magazine 115:2, Jul-Aug 2019.

Swami Abhishiktananda, Osage Monastery, and Me.” Spirit & Life Magazine 114:3, Sept-Oct 2018.

Praying to St. Benedict a Thousand Years Ago.” Spirit & Life Magazine 112:2, Jul-Aug 2016.

So Great a Cloud of Witnesses” (with Emily Ransom). Notre Dame Magazine, Winter 2014-2015.