Marian Poetry

These poems are all about Mary since it is the month of May. The first is a poem written in the Marian Year of 1987-88 by Patrick Coady, who wrote a series of 12 poems one for each month.  The second is one by Gerard Manley Hopkins, the famed Victorian poet. Both of these poems are about Mary.

May by Patrick Coady

This is the Mother’s month,
The May of Mary’s own,
When prayers, like new bloomed
On Autumn winds are blown.

For her these light lit lamps,
For her these hardy buds
That chanced the early frosts.
Hers all the joy that studs

Her altered May.
The northern air is warm
And sweet its gardens’ fruit.
To crown her grace this time
And birds her brightest flute.
For her this mantled May
For her this singing joy;
But here our nature’s face
Has blushed and hid as coy

In Mary’s May.
Upon the Autumn grasses
The frost is hung like gems
The morning’s icy stillness
Is clear as Bethlehem’s
Upon the night of Birth.

For her the clean-given gifts
For her this Southern month.
And clear our praising lifts
in frosty May.

The May Magnificat by Gerard Manley Hopkins, SJ

May is Mary’s month, and I
Muse at that and wonder why:
Her feasts follow reason,
Dated due to season-

Candlemas, Lady Day:
But the Lady Month, May,
Why fasten that upon her,
With a feasting in her honor?
Ask of her, the mighty mother:
Her reply puts this other
Question: What is Spring?
Growth in every thing-

All things rising, all things sizing
Mary sees, sympathizing
With that world of good,
Nature’s motherhood.

Well but there was more than this:
Spring’s universal bliss
Much, had much to say
To offering Mary May.


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