A Library for Augustine

This coming Monday, August 28th, is the feast day of St. Augustine. I am celebrating it a few days early, in order to bring attention to a worthy cause. Today’s art by Sandro Botticelli depicts Augustine sitting among books and treasures in a library-like setting. Today’s music is Sam Rocha’s “Late to Love,” inspired by Augustine’s Confessions and his famous words, “Late have I loved you, beauty so ancient and so new!”

This music with elements of jazz, soul, and folk, was released by Wiseblood Records, part of Wiseblood Books. Wiseblood Books is the publisher of my 2014 double volume: A Ship to Hold the world and The Marionette’s Ascent. Wiseblood is having a fundraiser to support “beauty so ancient and so new,” books that are classics-in-the-making for our times.

What better way to honor St. Augustine, the great bishop of Hippo and doctor of the Church, author of such classics as “The Confessions” and “City of God” than with a donation to Wiseblood Books? Wiseblood Books is a unique press of great integrity that in the words of managing editor Angela Cybulski is “reclaiming the culture from every element of secular relativism” through great literature and the promotion of authentic beauty. After all, St. Augustine’s feast is this coming Monday. It’s not too late to love the ancient and new beauty offered by Wiseblood and to create a new library of classics inspired by such greats as Augustine.

Donate here

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St. Augustine - Sandro Botticelli
St. Augustine – Sandro Botticelli
by Wiseblood Cover Artist Dominic Heisdorf
by Wiseblood Cover Artist Dominic Heisdorf

Cain at the Potter’s Wheel

We never knew the garden, only clay
of life in exile. Between the knees
of Eve we were born—spinning in the gray
formation of her wheel. She tried to squeeze
our open mouths until each was a vase—
open to what she poured—twin vessels of
right judgment, holders of good speech. She’d glaze
our cries by coating them with words like love
and bringing stolen flowers and cut fruit
from someplace far away. And I always
asked where they came from. Taken with the root
of things, I used their seeds to fill my days
and grew a new garden for Adam, Eve—
a paradise they wouldn’t have to leave.

A paradise they wouldn’t have to leave,
I thought. I offered my best crops to Eve—
but they were tinged with Eden. Adam grieved,
refused to eat the memories. Abel’s sleeve
was stained with blood, the slaughter. But they’d eat
what he brought home. It was the same with God.
They all preferred the dead lamb to the wheat.
And so I hit the butcher with my rod
and planted him—the broken shards, to see
what he would grow. Nothing, nothing, nothing.
No rose to make Eve smile, not a tree
to root Adam from leaving—not a ring
to join mother and father—just the sound
of Abel’s blood, spinning beneath the ground.

— Annabelle Moseley, from A Ship to Hold the World and the Marionette’s Ascent (Wiseblood Books, 2014)