The Poetry of Grace IV: Contemplative Experience

This is the fourth seminar series in a group titled The Poetry of Grace held at the Aquinas Academy in Sydney. Previous seminars have explored the poetry of Austrian Rainer Maria Rilke and Australian Francis Webb (these can be accessed from this WordPress site- just click on the Poetry of Grace link above). This 2018 seminar builds on these earlier seminars; it begins with some broad reflections on the nature of the sacred, on contemplation and on creativity, and then turns to the immediate Australian context: Judith Beveridge, an Aboriginal Song Cycle & Les Murray.  Thereafter the plan is to move in the direction of exploring some of the great English mystical poets: Shakespeare, William Blake, George Herbert, T.S. Eliot, William Wordsworth…

This space is provided for recording the contents of the seminar and for participants to be able to present any reflections in prose or poetry that they may wish to share with the group. If you do have anything to share please send this through as a Word.doc document to michael.griffith@acu.edu.au. I will then post it up in this space. Visual illustrations are also welcome.

Here is the audio of our first meeting on Wednesday November 7th. Enjoy!

Here are the slides used in this class (some of which will be carried over to next week):

Poetry & Grace Slides 1 (please note that the links in these slides are all active and will take you to video content. )

If you would also like to listen to a clearer recording of Judith Beveridge’s talk to ACU students then please head to this link. You will find the full lecture there, but you have to “scroll” in to the 58 minute mark to hear the start of her talk:

https://michaelgriffith1.com/2018/10/09/20th-century-poets-francis-webb-and-judith-beveridge/

Response Poem from Stephen Mason- (thank you Stephen):

I have a poem to offer the group in response to Merton’ s: the true poet is always akin to the mystic because of the prophetic intuition.
The poem below seeks a prophetic stance in reflecting on what being Christian means in relation to the context of contemporary Australian politics…

Hamlet’s Defeat

( ‘In apprehension how like a god…’ Hamlet)

Port Arthur, of course, our first off Shore facility…
Our first people smugglers, being Staunch English governors.

To be a con or not
To be a con artist’ s history…

Jesus was murdered in custody,
St.Paul, John Pat, Eddie Murray…

You frightened boat people
Who look to us for solace
Who want us to share
Our Claudian stolen Liberty…

In apprehension how like the Christian God we nail you off
Shore to Manus and Nauru.

Stephen Mason 2018

Jindy

Aboriginal Bark Painting from from Yirrkall, N.E. Arnhem Land- illustrating a legend of  two brothers lost while travelling in a canoe (Anthropology Museum, Uni of Queensland)- reproduced on the cover of  The Jindyworobaks edited by Brian Elliott. 

 

 

  1 comment for “The Poetry of Grace IV: Contemplative Experience

  1. Peter Solway
    November 6, 2018 at 6:51 pm

    looking forward to tomorrow’s lessons, this white-bearded antiquarian, bit deaf, keen to listen to songs of wisdom, your interpretations, busy note-taking, continuing on almost from Webb theme last time- level 5 in the lift again; still reckon your wrong about it all being subjective; yep keen to learn, entertain a common dimension in mystic Sydney ( with morning tea!)

    On Tue, Nov 6, 2018 at 1:18 PM Literature & Life Spring 2018 wrote:

    > michaelgriffith1 posted: “This is the fourth seminar series in a group > titled The Poetry of Grace held at the Aquinas Academy in Sydney. Previous > seminars have explored the poetry of Austrian Rainer Maria Rilke and > Australian Francis Webb. This 2018 seminar builds on these earlier” >

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