Monday, April 6, 2020

William Baer*

William Baer is a poet, playwright, fiction writer and university professor. He is the author of twenty two books, including six poetry collections ― the most recent of which is Love Sonnets (2016, White Violet Press). He has won the T.S. Eliot Poetry Prize, and the X.J. Kennedy Poetry Prize. Baer is a champion of the New Formalism, having edited several poetry anthologies highlighting metrical poetry, and he founded the journal The Formalist. He is also the founding director of the Richard Wilbur Poetry Series.

William Baer has taught creative writing, cinema, and world cultures at the University of Evansville, in Indiana.

The following poem first appeared in Louisiana English Journal, and is from his collection Psalter.


--------------------(Luke 22:44)

This is the bloody chalice of agony
borne of what’s to come. Which catches his breath
with wracking fears of what will come to be:
the whips, the thorns, the crucifixion and death.
It is an agony borne of sacrifice:
taking upon himself, in this lonely place,
every single evil, sin, and vice,
redeeming the entire human race.
It is an agony borne of the dreadful fact
that despite his efforts from now to Pentecost,
not all the world will properly react,
and many will still reject him and be lost.
And so, his blood, like sweat, without a sound,
Seeps through his flesh and trickles to the ground.

Posted with permission of the poet.

*This is the second Kingdom Poets post about William Baer: first post.

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.