Harrison Middleton University
The Raven
Gertrude Stein
astronomical clock
Rachel Carson

Category: Poetry

We’re excited that you’ve joined the conversation! At HMU, we want to continue the great authors’ conversations in a contemporary context, and this blog will help us do that. We look back to Aristotle and the early philosophers who used reason and discourse to gain wisdom and now we endeavor to do the same every day.


April 12, 2024

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Seeing that April is National Poetry Month, and poetry is one of my lifelong loves, I wanted to spend a few moments to share my experience. From songs and music, to rhyme and meter, I love it all. But people often ask me what I get out of poetry, what it does for me. So, today’s blog is a little nod to a discipline and art form that I have wrestled with for years.

 » Read more about: The Power of Poetry  »

November 24, 2023

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Each fall, Great Books San Francisco hosts a Poetry Weekend. And if there’s one thing that I’m grateful for in this world, it’s poetry. I love to attend this event because of its hybrid nature. The first day is filled with reading and discussion. Groups of fifteen or so are separated into Zoom spaces where we read,

 » Read more about: Poetic Gratitude  »

October 27, 2023

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Viola Cordova was one of the first Native American women to earn a degree in philosophy. Born in 1937, she grew up in Taos, New Mexico. Embracing both her own past and her curiosity of the world, she discarded notions that philosophy should be separated into categories like white or western. Instead, she focused on using all of the tools that we have been given,

 » Read more about: V. F. Cordova Describes Energy  »

Whitehead poem vectors

September 1, 2023

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

The following poem is constructed entirely from Sections VI-XI from Chapter III (“The Order of Nature”) in Alfred North Whitehead’s Process and Reality. To create the poem, I simply chose sections of text from Whitehead’s own words. Therefore, none of the remaining words are mine, I have merely excerpted and arranged them with a few added symbols. I like think that Whitehead would appreciate a mathematical-leaning poem,

 » Read more about: Found Poem with Whitehead’s Words  »

January 20, 2023

Thanks to Thomas Wells, HMU alumnus, for today’s blog.

I recently published a book of poetry: Complexions of Being, which was inspired by my time at Harrison Middleton University. I graduated in 2019, and my study at the university played an integral role in motivating and shaping the poetry in this book. To explain how this happened, I will describe my foray into poetry.

 » Read more about: Complexions of Being  »

December 23, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Robert Frost was born in San Francisco in 1874. Frost, an American icon, was one of few poets who achieved celebrity status. As the first poet to read at a Presidential Inauguration, he set many standards for our nation. Focused on country life, he explored themes which include capitalism, man and nature. His poems often feature impressive imagery.

 » Read more about: Robert Frost Delivers Christmas Trees  »

September 30, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Some of the primary texts that we study at Harrison Middleton University date back to the Roman Empire. Obviously we use popular translations of these texts, but it is always a worthy exercise to look at the primary texts. Much information can be gained by looking at the original versus the translation.

It is also interesting to note how prevalent Latin is in American society today.

 » Read more about: Latin Translation  »

September 9, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Like many American children, I grew up with the rhymes of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. I still remember snippets of “Paul Revere’s Ride”: “[T]hrough the gloom and the light,/ The fate of a nation was riding that night;/ And the spark struck out by that steed, in his flight,/ Kindled the land into flame with its heat.” That poem thrilled me and carries nostalgia for childhood and nostalgia for this great American dream.

 » Read more about: The Trouble with Longfellow  »

July 29, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s blog.

As I understand it, more than two hundred and fifty translations of the Tao te Ching exist. Looking for a chance to study language, poetry, and translation, I decided to compare a handful of versions of the Tao. Though there are a number of pre-existing published comparisons, I simply found some online versions. I selected some scholarly ones,

 » Read more about: Translations of the Tao  »

April 29, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Humans try to make sense of things. Is this a noble or foolhardy pursuit? In her book, In June the Labyrinth, poet Cynthia Hogue writes, “the labyrinth is not a maze but a singular way/ to strike ‘the profoundest chord’/ across aspire” (in “(‘to walk the labyrinth is amazing’)”). In other words, the journey of our lives is also,

 » Read more about: Labyrinth as Metaphor  »

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