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Love Calls Us to the Things of This World

Love Calls Us to the Things of This World

by Richard Wilbur

Spirituality Theme

While this poem calls us to celebrate the "things of this world," it also shows us the spiritual interconnectedness behind our human world. There is a whole network of angels greeting each morning; the soul watches over us before we fully enter the day; and, though the spirit's activity might calm down after sunrise, they sink into us and we carry them with us throughout the day. So, while we are subject to our own human lives and our uniquely human errors, we are all united by a greater spiritual power than our individual selves—at least, according to "Love Calls Us to the Things of This World."

Questions About Spirituality

  1. How does Wilbur manage to write a poem about spirituality that isn't religious? What's the difference between the two? Are there any not spiritual, but religious elements in the poem?
  2. We get to see the point of view of the soul, but not of any of the human characters in the poem. 
  3. How aware do you think they are of the presence of the spiritual world? 
  4. What do you think happens to the soul when it reunites with the body? Is this a spiritual event in any way?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

The poem actually is religious, just implicitly so. The soul and angels represent specific religious characters.

In this poem, spirituality is all about celebrating the good with the bad, and in order to do that, the soul needs a body.

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