Monday, January 20, 2020

Marianne Bluger

Marianne Bluger (1945―2005) is a Canadian poet who authored eleven collections, including The Eternities (2005, St. Thomas Poetry Series). Her father was a Jewish Holocaust survivor, and her first husband a Zen master. She was influenced by both, and passionate about her own Anglican, Christian faith.

She studied under Louis Dudek at McGill University, and maintained a friendship with him throughout their lives. She received the Archibald Lampman Award in 1993, for her collection Summer Grass (Brick Books).

Her obituary says, “Bluger co-founded Christians Against Apartheid. She worked for many years with great dedication both in secret and openly to help bring down the evil regime of Apartheid in South Africa. The church network that was able to do so much to topple the oppressors, and the example of the church women of South Africa who suffered so much, taught her the most important lesson of her life: that Christ will never fail the one who loves and trusts Him.”

She administered the Canadian Writers’ Foundation for twenty five years, assisting noteworthy Canadian writers with financial needs. She also co-founded the Tabitha Foundation to assist those in Cambodia.

The Choirmaster

After the practice
when the choir is gone
in the stilly twilit
stained glass gloom

at the windy organ
in the country church
an old dame with arthritic hands
plays on and on…

a fugue of Bach
its rounded sounds
in perfect tune
fused line on line
pour forth and there
throbbing in the hallowed air
hangs the whole blessed empyrean

her pure heart’s gift to the Holy One

This poem appeared in the Margo Swiss anthology Poetry As Liturgy (St. Thomas Poetry Series).

Entry written by D.S. Martin. His latest poetry collection is Ampersand (2018, Cascade). His books are available through Amazon, and Wipf & Stock, including the anthologies The Turning Aside, and Adam, Eve, & the Riders of the Apocalypse.