Friday, March 17, 2023

When did you ...

A fellow over on Twitter posed a question: When did you realize C.S. Lewis and G.K. Chesterton were right about pretty much everything?

I had to think about that one.

My own contact with Lewis and Chesterton began in the 1970's. In late 1974 I read the Chronicles of Narnia. I read Chesterton's St. Francis of Assisi in the spring of 1975. Both authors were important to helping sort out my faith at that time.

Though I had encountered the writings of both, I gravitated toward Lewis. Indeed, I began to buy and read his books/collections. By the early 1980's I had read a couple of biographies about him, and:

The science fiction trilogy. The Screwtape Letters, Till We Have Faces, Mere Christianity, The Allegory of Love, The Four Loves, The Abolition of Man, The World's Last Night, Of Other Worlds, God in the Dock, Surprised by Joy, A Grief Observed

I found in Lewis a kindred spirit. I did indeed think he was right about pretty much everything.

I began reading more Chesterton in the 1980's, in part because of learning about his influence on Lewis, and in part because he was touted for writing two of the spiritual classics of the Twentieth Century: Orthodoxy and The Everlasting Man. So I read both. His thinking helped me to clarify my own. I saw he was also right about things. But I still preferred Lewis, whom I found easier and more pleasurable to read.

I became more immersed in Chesterton in the 1990's and, in particular, after joining the Chesterton Society in the early 2000's, subscribing to Gilbert, and attending the local annual Chesterton conferences. In the last 20 years I have read multiple books by and about him, includign several biographies. Of Chesterton I have read:

The Man Who Was Thursday, Manalive, G. K. Chesterton's Early Poetry, The Coloured Lands, Tremendous Trifles, What's Wrong With The World, The Autobiography, Magic, Heretics, Chesteerton in Black and White, The Well and the Shallows, and Eugenics and Other Evils.

Dale Ahlquist has produced a number of studies I have read: Knight of the Holy Ghost,  The Gift of Wonder,The Complete Thinker, and The Apostle of Common Sense. 

There have been other works about him as well.  

Yes, when I discover an author I like I become fixated.

I still find Lewis easier and more pleasurable to read. And, to be honest, I have found some of Chesterton's dated racial terms and stereotypes uncomfortable to read. But I still read both - most recently reading The Great Divorce and rereading Out of the Silent Planet, Mere Christianity, and The Screwtape Letters, all by Lewis, and currently rereading The Everlasting Man with the local Chesterton Society. 

Last year, I reread two of the Narnia books: The Silver Chair and The Last Battle

As for Chesterton, I read
The Ballad of the White Horse
Lepanto: With Explanatory Notes and Commentary
The Secret of Father Brown

"The Donnington Affair"
“The Vampire of the Village”
St. Thomas Aquinas

I have a goal of reading all the Father Brown mysteries. I'll finish that goal this year. I'll also likely be reading another Chesterton title with the local Chesterton Society. As for Lewis, I will be rereading some of his books - it's been 40 years since I binged on him.

Going back to the fellow's Twitter question: I began seeing Lewis as right about pretty much everything in the 1970's, and Chesterton in the early 2000's. 

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Speaking of Clerihews


Over the years I've been fortunate to have a number of my clerihews published in Gilbert . The current tally is 50 individual poems. Due to some mix-up, four of those were published a second time.

The last one published was a Robert Burns one in the May/June 2022 issue.

Although I did not attend the Conference last year, I did submit several clerihews for the Clerihew Contest. Alas, they did not make the winners' list, nor have they appeared since in any issue. So unless one of those that I submitted last July make it into print in the future, the tally will likely remain at 50.

Not a bad total.

Oh, I'm still writing clerihews, and will continue to post them here, but I've stopped submitting to the magazine for now.

Here's the published list in alphabetical order:

Achilles - Gilbert Nov/Dec 2017
After that day in Moriah, young Isaac - Gilbert Nov/Dec 2017
Albert Einstein - Gilbert Magazine, September 2009

Alexa - Gilbert May/June 2020

Anne Rice - Gilbert Magazine, March/April 2011

As a director, Ed Wood - Gilbert May/June 2020

A somber Marquis de Sade - Gilbert May/June 2017

At Nicaea, St. Nicholas - Gilbert! May/June 2019

Ayn Rand - Gilbert May/June 2020

Charles Bukowski - Gilbert January/February 2017

Condoleeza Rice - Gilbert Magazine, June/July 2007

Dr. Mary Gatter - Gilbert May/June 2017

e (cummings) e - Gilbert Magazine, March/April 2011

Elizabeth Warren - Gilbert May/June 2020

Evangelista Torricelli - Gilbert January/February 2019

Fidel Castro - Gilbert Magazine, April/May 2007

Fred Rogers - Gilbert November/December 2018

Geoffrey Chaucer - Gilbert May/June 2020

G. K. Chesterton - Gilbert Nov/Dec 2017

Herman Melville -  Gilbert Magazine, April/May 2007

I don’t know if Rudyard Kipling - Gilbert Magazine, April/May 2007

In his early life Thomas Merton - Gilbert Magazine, March/April 2011

In those woods, Robert Frost- Gilbert Magazine, April/May 2009

Irascible St. Jerome - Gilbert Nov/Dec 2017

Jackson Pollock - Gilbert! May/June 2019

Jean Paul Sartre - Gilbert Magazine, April/May 2007

Lot's wife - Gilbert Magazine, March/April 2011

Methuselah - Gilbert! July/August 2018

Napoleon Bonaparte - Gilbert Nov/Dec 2017

One of the aims of ISIS - Gilbert May/June 2017

     One of the aims of ISIS - Gilbert May/June 2020

Paolo Uccello - Gilbert November/December 2018

President James Polk - Gilbert Magazine, May/June 2011

Prolific Stephen King - Gilbert Magazine, March/April 2011

Robert Burns – Gilbert May/June 2022

Rudyard Kipling - Gilbert April/May 2007 

Saintly King Henry - Gilbert November/December 2018

Steven Wright - Gilbert May/June 2017

     Steven Wright - Gilbert! May/June 2019

St. Dominic - Gilbert November/December 2018

St. Francis of Assisi - Gilbert Magazine, April/May 2007

St. Thomas Aquinas - Gilbert November/December 2018

There was a side of J. R. R. Tolkien - Gilbert Nov/Dec 2017

Titus Oates - Gilbert! May/June 2019

Tron - Gilbert November/December 2018

TV’s Dr. House - Gilbert Magazine, April/May 2007

Vladimir Kosma Zworykin - Gilbert Magazine, March/April 2011

Vladimir Putin - Gilbert (March/April) 2017

When Alexander Pope - Gilbert May/June 2017

     When Alexander Pope - Gilbert! May/June 2019

When he was young St. Polycarp - Gilbert May/June 2017

     When he was young St. Polycarp - Gilbert! May/June 2019

When talking with Socrates - Gilbert Magazine, January/February 2007

When Siddhartha Gautama - Gilbert Magazine, July/August 2009

Yvonne De Carlo - Gilbert! March/April 2021