Worlds Interpenetrating and Apart (eBook)

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Worlds Interpenetrating and Apart: Collected Poems, 1959 – 1995

In this volume of poems written over thirty-five years, William Irwin Thompson presents a remarkable range of work―from the personal and lyrical, through the narrative and mythological, to the scientific and cosmological―that traces many of the major themes that have affected contemporary culture for the past half century. His book opens with a mythological sequence on Quetzalcoatl, “Blue Jade from the Morning Star,” which john Bierhorst has called “a fresh reading.”

In the words of Kathleen Raine: “There is a great difference between merely academic translation and the imaginative participation which Dr. Thompson has brought to these ‘versions’ and verse commentaries on the great vision of Quetzalcoatl.”

Books Two and Three contain mostly lyrical work, while Book Four concludes with a vision of the evolution of life that extends the lyrical into the cosmological in a sequence built on and addressed to the work of his four scientific friends: Ralph Abraham, James Lovelock, Lynn Margulis, and Francisco Varela.

About the Author

William Irwin Thompson, Ph.D. (1938-2020) was born in Chicago and grew up in Los Angeles. A poet and cultural philosopher, he received a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship to study at Cornell in 1962 and a Woodrow Wilson Dissertation Fellowship for doctoral research in Dublin in 1964. He published his first book, The Imagination of an Insurrection: Dublin, Easter 1916 in 1967. Thompson has taught at Cornell, MIT, and York University in Toronto. His interdisciplinary interests are indicated in that he studied anthropology, philosophy, and literature at Pomona, and literature and cultural history at Cornell. He has served as visiting professor of religion at Syracuse University (1973), visiting professor of Celtic Studies at St. Michael’s College, the University of Toronto (1984), visiting professor of political science at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (1985), Rockefeller Scholar at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco (1992-1995), and Lindisfarne Scholar-in-Residence at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York in the autumn of each year from 1992 to 1996. In 1995, he designed an Evolution of Consciousness Curriculum for the Ross School in East Hampton, New York. His best known works include At the Edge of History: Speculations on the Transformation of Culture (1971); The Time Falling Bodies Take To Light: Mythology, Sexuality, and the Origins of Culture (1981); and Coming Into Being: Artifacts and Texts in the Evolution of Consciousness (1996). He was a founder and president of the Lindisfarne Association, a group of creative individuals in the arts, sciences, and contemplative practices devoted to the study and realization of a new planetary culture, and the seed for Lindisfarne Books.

Additional information







October 1997






Lindisfarne Books


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