Poetry Month: Fr. James Torrens, S.J. '48 offers two recent poems
Posted 04/05/2017 09:01AM

James Torrens '48, is a Jesuit priest currently in Fresno, serving the Fresno diocese. He has been on the faculty at Santa Clara University (1970-1990) and an associate editor at America magazine (1990-1999).

Read more about Fr. Torrens' latest work here.


Ah my poor skin I worried

taking our ballpark seats at noon

under a broiler sun when my eyes

lit on the hawk just beyond the stands

in its unhurried swing up over

the nearby building on a breath of air

barely detectable but enough

for the black tip of that sag of wings

to ride in the loop of vigilance

that would soon enough return it

over our outfield where the pop ups

and fly balls demand attention.

And late in the game a flurry

of the dark feathers lifted this totem

into the light standard, the many bulbs

of the stadium pale until dusk.

Has the hawk mother a nest up there?

Is this a lookout post for the hunter?

The visit twice repeats. It reminds us—

after our brief enjoyments

these grounds revert to the wild.



Here is a poser about volition:

what's the most capital of sins?

In Scott Peck's opinion sloth.

The soul's one deplorable condition

is sluggardry. What you cotton to

gets the attention;

what you know you should

stays in the In Box.

Manaña sums it all up.

Since things fall apart,

resignation seems right to you,

fatalism. Forget imagination!

Let your contrition focus,

Peck says, on what´s undone—

not lust or pride, simply omission.

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