Andrew Thornton-Norris

About Andrew Thornton-Norris

Andrew Thornton-Norris is the author of The Spiritual History of English, described by The Times as "an enjoyable, erudite and cohesive journey through the history and philosophy of English literature in 150 pithily written pages." He is also an accomplished poet praised by such authors as David Yezzi, Fiona Sampson, Alison Brackenbury, John Powell Ward, Aidan Nichols and Roger Scruton. He has his own website at

“New adventures in verse (a mournless music)”

By |2020-09-08T14:22:57-05:00November 29th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

The window's complaint, the evening's lament, escaping light steals into streets, a peal of scales hangs outside. There is an absence in the air, a pall, of forbearance, forgiveness, of unrepentance. The ghost of unforgiveness haunts this place like bells which fail to chime in towers and trees like teeth which fail to click in [...]

“New times New images”

By |2020-09-08T14:12:34-05:00November 22nd, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

The inner life, consciousness without communication, lived experience alone, the cornerstone The inner life is like a railway station Sometimes busy sometimes quiet Usually everything is on time Sometimes everything stops and waits for nothing The inner life is like the urban landscape turned inside out so all the private places are public and all [...]

“High Summer”

By |2020-08-27T10:17:49-05:00November 15th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

When wandering in the woods or in the trees Or in the fields or streets or alleyways Or paths or parks and wondering becomes when? I'd be happy to go at anytime that's my time. In the heat of day or dead of night In summer's light or winter's deepening dark In the collapsing spiral [...]

“The Palace of Art”

By |2020-09-02T23:28:01-05:00November 8th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

Inside the rented room of refuge from Awaiting loss and loneliness the cracks Upon the walls and window panes are maps Of how they will fulfill their journey home. As panic beats upon the doors and floors In incantations of strange poetry Until the kettle fumes and offerings Of bread and booze blot out the [...]


By |2020-09-05T15:44:12-05:00November 1st, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

My heart is beaten by the drum of rain Upon the window pane the beating of My cares upon my brain O let them sleep And let me lead a simple life and plain And suddenly it all make sense again The sixth day of creation laid to rest And let me live in paradise [...]

“The Natural Law of Love”

By |2020-09-01T17:08:32-05:00October 25th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

The need that only the human person can meet Is given flesh by meeting someone new, But like the dream of morning nearly forgotten, All that remains at noon is the feeling: The taste of hope reawakening, Like the parent returning to the child. The Imaginative Conservative applies the principle of appreciation to the discussion of [...]


By |2020-08-31T17:03:54-05:00October 18th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

The wasteland where the wildflowers blow And desert souls receive the gifts of grace Not planned, planted, ploughed nor harvested By human hands they grow and show your face. I thank my father for you every day Who gave me everything there is to give You showed forth his face and made his hands Embrace [...]

“The Empire”

By |2020-08-29T09:50:32-05:00October 11th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

I have to destroy an entire empire in me, To breach the ramparts of the living hell, To storm the citadel, take on the legions Of the dead, attacking day and night, With only faith to keep me in the fight. I have destroyed the sweetness of your grace, With words and deed of hands [...]

“The only thing that’s perfect in this world”

By |2020-08-26T16:26:51-05:00October 4th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

The only thing that's perfect in this world Is love, shower your mercies down on us. Only to the truly vulnerable And sensitive one does the muse come. Only to those of gentle heart, and they Are one, does the god of love come. Between the expectation and conclusion Lies creation in all its manifold [...]

“Hang me on a tree”

By |2020-08-31T01:14:19-05:00September 27th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

Lift me up on high Exalt me in humility Nail my hands to the tree One on each side So that my fingers bend and touch The steel that holds me up As blood flows warm like ice cream When I was a child and then congeals Lift me up on high Exalt me in [...]

“In Memory of Charles Baudelaire”

By |2020-08-25T16:00:16-05:00September 20th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

Castis cum pueris ignara puella mariti disceret unde preces, vatem ni Musa dedisset? On dead mornings the sun congeals on buildings, The rain licks and washes the wounded streets, The sirens are singing their emergency. In the cemeteries the dead are buried, One on top of the other again and again, The river runs underneath [...]


By |2020-08-25T15:43:27-05:00September 13th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

Speak then heart, beating in my breast, I lend to you my tongue, my mouth, my breath. The rain began to fall upon my head; Grieving for someone who was not dead, but Alive, grieving for their life, their presence, Not their death, their going hence, their absence. The Imaginative Conservative applies the principle of appreciation [...]


By |2020-08-24T14:36:11-05:00September 6th, 2014|Categories: Poetry|

As form contains the meaning of the work So heaven is revealed in liturgy The inward grace in sacramental sign The mystery of being uncovering Ineluctable trinitarian light The beatific vision happiness The love that moves the sun and other stars Our brother sun and sister moon and stars The Imaginative Conservative applies the principle of [...]

“The Glory of the Word”

By |2020-08-20T16:06:01-05:00August 30th, 2014|Categories: Love, Poetry|

(Hans Urs Von Balthasar) I didn't even want to love her but However much we might deny the truth True love is loving the person next to us. Cast out the paralytic demon fear As dawn light breaks upon the darkened down And ordinary happiness abounds. And only realist metaphysics brings The glory transcendental beauty [...]

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