Welcome, all wonders in one sight!
Eternity shut in a span,
Summer in winter,
day in night,
Heaven in earth,
and God in man!
That’s how the English poet Richard Crashaw speaks about the big event of December: the birth of the infant Christ at Christmas. Fortunately, I’m joined this week by Dr. Theresa Kenney, Professor of English at the University of Dallas, and author of a new book about poetry about the Christ Child: the book is called All Wonders in One Sight: The Christ Child Among the Elizabethan and Stuart Poets.
Dr. Kenney and I discuss her book and a range of fascinating issues: why the Council of Trent promulgated new rules about Christian art in the 16th century, why the underappreciated English Renaissance poet, Jesuit Priest and martyr Robert Southwell is so important, and why many English Protestants were especially interested in the Gospel of John.
You can find links to the poems we discuss here:
Richard Crashaw’s “In the Holy Nativity of our Lord”: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44058/in-the-holy-nativity-of-our-lord
'Learn to love as I love thee' (dialogue between Mary and Christ): https://aclerkofoxford.blogspot.com/2016/01/learn-to-love-as-i-love-thee.html
Robert Southwell’s “The Burning Babe”: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/45183/the-burning-babe
Dr. Kenney’s book:
Free video series, “The Quest”: https://quest.udallas.edu/
St. Ambrose Center: https://saintambrosecenter.udallas.edu/
Liberal Learning for Life @ University of Dallas: https://udallas.edu/liberal-learning/