Magazine | January 24, 2011, Issue

Poetry

A C.S. LEWIS BODICE-RIPPER, FROM AFRICA

In making books there is no end,

And little merit. You have read

Of world on world that has no friend,

In volumes equally as dead;

And if I sent a screed to you

On life unending, you would sigh,

As, certainly, you’ve read that too,

And I am plainly going to die.

But what about a hot desire –

In a few words, because you share it?

A fantasy, a secret fire?

But if you’re bored, of course I’ll spare it.

Nineteen years old, I took a ride

Across the fields and met the one

Who spent entire months inside,

Only remembering her son.

It was as strange as in a book –

And yet she spoke to me and smiled.

She had a silly, open look,

As if I were her hapless child.

My eyes resolved on flat contempt –

That stayed with me in this new land,

Where grief, from which I seem exempt,

Nests bare and shaking in my hand.

But what about the ulcerous spot

Scoured by the gravelly blood of yearning,

Where so much is, but love is not?

The names, the theories for that burning!

Let Mercy strip my life of sleep.

Renew me, give me eyes to see.

Since You have paid, the truth is cheap:

There is one God, for her and me.

Sarah Ruden is the author, most recently, of a translation of Augustine’s Confessions.

In This Issue

Articles

Politics & Policy

Advantage: Obama

The overhyped political story of the moment is President Obama’s supposed comeback. That story notes that just weeks after his midterm “shellacking” he won congressional approval for a deal on ...
Politics & Policy

Budget War

The 2010 midterm election was a decisive victory for Republicans. From where they now sit — with a strong majority in the House and a much-improved position in the Senate ...
Politics & Policy

What the Whigs Knew

Eva Moskowitz is a traditional, down-the-line Democrat in almost every respect. She’s a Jewish New Yorker from a family of FDR liberals. “My grandmother would turn over in her grave ...

Features

Politics & Policy

Socialism Is Back

‘Socialism” is a word that has vexed thoughtful conservatives since 2008, along with the related terms “Marxist,” “radical,” and the whole nomenclature of leftish extremism. In his painstakingly documented book ...

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Top Down

The ideology of the American ruling class has done great harm to those classes which do not have the privilege of ruling, and few people are better equipped to analyze ...
The Straggler

Shovel Ready

One of our township’s very few claims to fame, perhaps the only one, arises from its cesspools. The Wikipedia article headed “cesspool” devotes an entire paragraph to Huntington. In numbers ...

Sections

Politics & Policy

Letters

Defeats that Weren’t I would like to thank Mackubin Thomas Owens and James S. Robbins — the former for reviewing This Time We Win (“The Tet Myth,” December 20) and the ...
The Long View

Federal Health Care Act

Form 17Ai: End of Life/Authorized Life Termination/Difficult Next of Kin Reimbursement Procedures Federal Guidelines for the Health Care Reform Act–authorized “End of Life Counseling” [ELC] procedures: ELC sessions are now fully reimbursable ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

A C.S. LEWIS BODICE-RIPPER, FROM AFRICA In making books there is no end, And little merit. You have read Of world on world that has no friend, In volumes equally as dead; And if I ...
Athwart

Mojo Myth

The president attended church in Hawaii, but he went the day after Christmas, so as not to distract from the other guy’s limelight. Decent of him; the babe only gets ...
Politics & Policy

Operation Rewind

While we like a good party now and again, the fact that House Republicans held no official gala to celebrate their accession to the majority in the new Congress reflects ...

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Hillary Ruins the Plan

Editor’s note: Andrew C. McCarthy’s new book is Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency. This is the first in a series of excerpts.  There really was a collusion plot. It really did target our election system. It absolutely sought to usurp our capacity for ... Read More
Religion

Another Pop-Culture Christian Loses His Faith

It’s happened again. For the second time in three weeks, a prominent (at least in Evangelical circles) Christian has renounced his faith. In July, it was Josh Harris, a pastor and author of the mega-best-selling purity-culture book I Kissed Dating Goodbye. This month, it’s Hillsong United songwriter and ... Read More
Elections

A Brief History of Election Meddling

Editor’s note: Andrew C. McCarthy’s new book is Ball of Collusion: The Plot to Rig an Election and Destroy a Presidency. This is the second in a series of excerpts. ‘The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.” Thus spoke President Barack Obama just a couple of weeks before ... Read More
World

The End of Hong Kong as We Know It

The protests in Hong Kong have been going on for more than four months now, and no matter how the current crisis concludes in the coming days or weeks, it will mark the end of Hong Kong as we know it. The protests started in response to an extradition bill that was proposed by the city’s Beijing-backed ... Read More
Culture

Max Boot’s Dishonesty

Before yesterday, my primary criticism of the Washington Post’s Max Boot was political in nature. As I wrote in a recent book review, I found it regrettable that Boot’s opposition to the president had not prevented him from “succumbing reactively to Trump’s cult of personality, or from making Trump the ... Read More