Swift Days

Catholic Poetry Room

This week’s poem in the Catholic Poetry Room is by Geoffrey Smagacz.                                                                                                             

Swift Days

These last and very few swift days,
Quick as a hawk come down to kill
(You won’t see it unless you gaze
Non stop; it takes a special skill,

Which I don’t have), I’m turning fifty
In a hundred hours more or less.
You’d need patience – my mind is drifty –
I mean to say – or can you guess:

God knows exactly how much time
You’d need to see the hawk event.
You might wait well into your prime
Or glimpse the kill by accident.


Wiseblood Books published a short collection of Geoffrey Smagacz’s fiction, A Waste of Shame and Other Sad Tales of the Appalachian Foothills in 2013. The book won the 2014 Independent Publisher gold medal for Mid-Atlantic Best Regional Fiction. It was a nominee for the 2014 Book-of-the-Year fiction award from the Appalachian Writers Association. The first chapter of the novella was nominated for a 2013 Pushcart Prize. Many of the stories and two of the chapters had been previously published in literary magazines. Geoffrey’s rhymed and metered poetry has been published in various literary magazines and e-zines, particularly in Dappled Things. He attended the first poetry conference of the Colosseum Institute in Steubenville in 2019. Geoffrey’s amateur sleuth murder mystery, Never Say Murder, is available on Amazon.

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About the Author

Tim Bete, ICL Poetry Curator To submit poetry to be considered for the Catholic Poetry Room, visit our submission guidelines page or CatholicPoetry.org.


Tim Bete is Poetry Editor for IntegratedCatholicLife.org and always searching for the best Catholic poetry from today's poets as well as those of the past.

Tim's poetry has appeared in Presence: A Journal of Catholic Poetry, The Asketerion, and the Poet and Contemplative Blog of the Discalced Carmelite Friars (Province of St. Therese). His first book of poetry is The Raw Stillness of Heaven, of which one reviewer wrote, “If you are Catholic and think that you do not like poetry, this book will change your mind.”

Tim is former director of the national writers' workshop at the University of Dayton—a Catholic, Marianist university. He's a member of the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites (OCDS) and often trades poems with his oldest daughter, who is a Dominican Sister. He says she's the best writer in the family.

Tim's writing has also appeared in several editions of the Amazing Grace anthology series (Ascension Press), theChristian Science Monitor, Writer's Digest magazine, and numerous parenting magazines. His latest book is Wanderings of an Ordinary Pilgrim

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