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with Jesus

Christian Wiman (b. 1966)


For all
the pain

passed down
the genes

or latent
in the very grain

of being;
for the lordless

the smear

of spirit
words intuit

and inter;
for all

the nightfall

into me

even now,
my prayer

is that a mind

by anxiety
or despair

might find

a trace
of peace.

From Once in the West: Poems (New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2014)

Christian Wiman is the author, editor or translator of more than a dozen books of poetry and prose. He teaches religion and literature at the Yale Institute of Sacred Music and at Yale Divinity School.  His most recent book is Zero at the Bone: Fifty Entries Against Despair (2023).

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