Friday, February 18, 2011

Songs From Poems: No Storms Come

The Innocence Mission: No Storms Come


When I was reading up on Victorian poet Gerard Manley Hopkins to prepare to write this post, I came across this line:

He is regarded by different readers as the greatest Victorian poet of religion, of nature, or of melancholy. [source]

This line struck me because the song I post is by The Innocence Mission, a band I could describe the same way. Both the band and the poet are devout Catholics, and they write often about the beauty and strength of the natural world, and do so in the most hauntingly beautiful and melancholic way.

The poem the song was taken from is called "Heaven-Haven: A Nun Takes the Veil". The poem (and song) itself says nothing religious, but talks about a longing for a place where things are always beautiful and never hard, and in that regard it is like Heaven. In Hopkins life, he seemed to struggle with his conflicting views between whether he could be a good Jesuit priest as well as a poet, and also was battling the conflict between his religious beliefs and (according to a number of sources) his sexuality. He died at a fairly young age of typhoid fever, only to have his poetry that was largely unpublished before his death, later praised as being ahead of its time.

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