Signs for the Times

Certainly poetry at its best captures sentiments and human striving with immortal lines. From the tragic battle for Troy (Homer) to the quest to recover Paradise (Milton), poetry speaks to the epic panorama of human experience. Along the way, some shorter lyrics provide us with snippets of experience, wrapped in the sounds and imagery of life.  

This weekend, I ran across a helpful recap of “9 Poems for This Fraught Moment,” by Atlantic Monthly editor, Caroline Mimbs Nyce. I was pleased to see that Nyce had, with the help of other Atlantic writers, selected a chorus of modern poets who were all wrestling with the juxtaposition of beauty amid the limits of life. From these musings, she even suggested memorizing a poem (good advice!). 

In short, I thought it would be good to start the week off with some poetry: prompting a beautiful image or two and practicing a finely-tuned phrase, all in preparation for a week that is destined to be filled with sweet, sour, adazzle, dim, and everything dappled in between. 


VIRTUE is the flagship publication of the Institute for Classical Education. It disseminates stories, ideas, research and experiences in classical education to readers across the nation, helping them to pursue the classical ideals of truth, goodness, and beauty.

Subscribing to VIRTUE's mailing list is absolutely free.

VIRTUE Magaizine Issue 08

Sign up today for your copy and join 25,000+ teachers, leaders, and friends of K-12 Classical education.