Christian Wiman

If I could write a cry

if I could reduce

or maybe raise

all music to a moan

savage unsayable psalm

barb and balm

of my unbreakable heart

Christian WimanChristian Wiman is the author, editor, or translator of nine books, including My Bright Abyss: Meditation of a Modern Believer (2013). His new book of poems, Once in the West, was released in the fall of 2014. His spare, precise poems often explore themes of spiritual faith and doubt. For ten years, he served as editor of Poetry magazine; in 2013 he joined the faculty of Yale Institute of Sacred Music and Yale Divinity School.


This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Recommended Citation: Wiman, Christian (2014) “[If I could write a cry],” The Yale ISM Review: Vol. 1: No. 1, Article 4.
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Cover of Yale ISM Review Volume 1.1 Fall 2014

Publisher’s Welcome

In This Issue

On the Cover

[If I could write a cry]

Song Whose Beauty Deepens Prayer

The Body That Sings

Sacred Folk Song

Work Songs

Great Art and a People’s Music

Psalm Singing in Roman Catholic Liturgy

All of Life Can Be Sung

Canticle of the Sun II

The River of Life


Preparing a Hymn

Acoustic Challenges in Worship-Space Design

International Adoption Agents

Have Hymnals Become Dinosaurs?

[It may be Lord our voice is suited now]