The Ordering of Love: The New and Collected Poems of Madeleine L'Engle

by Madeleine L'Engle

Hardcover, 2005





From the beloved author of A Wrinkle in Time comes the definitive edition of her inspirational and timeless poetry, featuring more than 200 original poems, a new Foreword by Sarah Arthur, and a new reader's guide by Lindsay Lackey.   Madeleine L'Engle's writing has always translated the invisible, quiet corners of our hearts into a vivid, stunning experience. Her fiction invites readers into new universes while her spiritual memoirs unveil the tenderness and resilience of the human spirit. In her poetry, L'Engle's craft proves just as striking, as she traverses the full breadth of the soul with her words, intimately exploring the contours of hope, doubt, and love. "It is written out of pain, joy, and experience too great to be borne until it is ordered into words," she says of her poetry. "And then it is written to be shared." Open-hearted and vulnerable, The Ordering of Love is a meditation on beauty, loss, faith, and devotion. "A prayerful and powerful portrait of a writer who served her work, and served it well. May we strive to do the same." --Sarah Arthur, from the Foreword… (more)


Shaw Books (2005), Edition: First Ed First Printing, 384 pages


(16 ratings; 4.1)

User reviews

LibraryThing member DonnaMarieMerritt
I loved L'Engle's fiction as a child and when I recently discovered that she had also written poetry, I jumped at the chance to read this complete volume of her work. The first section, Lines Scribbled on an Envelope, started out promising. Her wit and way of looking at things differently were
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evident in poems such as "The Mermaid" and "The Dragon." Maybe it's because she was having fun incorporating fantasy and play into those that made me like them so much.

Most of the book contained religious poems. Some made me think, which I liked and appreciated, but most seemed preachy and too holy. From a subjective point of view, many did not even seem particularly well written, though there were certainly a few that stood out as excellent.

For me, she returned to her own strong voice near the end of the book with the uncollected poems, such as "My Sins, I Fear, Dear Lord, Lack Glamour." And the sonnets she wrote in honor of her dead husband were moving and beautiful. They felt much more real than the "holy" poems. A sample from "Sonnet 2": How long your closet held a whiff of you, / Long after hangers hung austere and bare. / I would walk in and suddenly the true / Sharp sweet sweat scent controlled the air / And life was in that small still living breath. From "Sonnet 3": This, too, is passion, the so gentle touch / Of fingertip to wrist, to shoulder, face.

If you are a L'Engle fan, there are bound to be poems in this book that will connect you with her spirit and life.
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