Mopping Up: Interesting Bits and Pieces

In the interests of clearing my starred items in Google reader, here are various interesting bits and pieces that readers of this blog might want to follow up:

For the poetically minded:  go and take a look at the poems in D W Congdon’s "As Barth" competition here.  My favourite (and not the winner) is the entry 15 by David Wright:

Bonhoeffer Argues with Barth Over Heaven and its Songs

Not the angels who skim across pins,
     en familie to Mozart and his lighted love of the air

Not the robed wonders who trade their antiphonal orders,
     the patterns of Palestrina from, first, the East, then West, the home of human sins

Nor the simplest common chorales, broken off
     as the Psalters of Geneva, of Plymouth, of  Jerusalem and its steps

We believe in the prison and its concrete, impermanent walls,
     in the sermon for all those held captive

We revel in the God become flesh and the old world
     of tangential dust gathered to touch, though not touch, the new

Bach rewrote the world from the ground, bowed down
     where the back can receive a blessing or thrashing, God knows

When our mist burns away in the sun we will know
      Deus non est in genere,

Praise will be made from the fugue of the earth,
     all its broken voices silent at first

Then circling to intone Vor deinen Thron tret ich hiermit,
     Amen, amen, erhore mich

You may also like to check out Dave’s post on the poet Scott Cairns, whose work I have not come across before.  I now have several volumes (many of which are hard to come by or expensive) on order.

For the postmodern minded
: you may like to take a look at stuff emerging from contributors to The Church and Postmodern Culture.  I found those on The Gift in Stranger than Fiction Part 1 and Part 2 to be a helpful overview of Derrida and Milbank on the gift.  The more recent post on the ways in which consideration os Postmodern theory challenge typically held positions on gender relationships and gender justice was also provocative.  Those of you who want to engage with the work of postmodern theorists first hand might want to check out the Continental Philosophy site where, for example, you can watch and listen to Derrida on love, or download the crucial chapter on "Violence and Metaphysics" from Writing and Difference.

For the politically minded: you might like to take a look at George Bush’s top 50 quotations about religion  which taken together just about say it all (HT to Faith Central at Times Online).