Latter Day Saint poetry

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The Scottish poet, John Lyon, was one of the first major LDS poets.

LDS poetry (or Mormon poetry) is poetry written by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints about spiritual topics or themes.

Latter-day Saints have composed religious poetry since the Church's beginnings in the early 18th century. For Latter-day Saints, poetry is a form of art that can bring the Holy Spirit to the presented message. For example, the Elder's Journal, published at Far West in 1838 and edited by Joseph and Don Carlos Smith, contained a beautiful poetic tribute to James G. Marsh.[1]

More recently, poetry has been seen in Mormon General Conference talks given by Apostles of the church. For example, in 1972 as part of his address, Elder Bruce R. McConkie read his poem, "I Believe In Christ," which later became a much-loved LDS hymn.[2] Many years later, Elder Boyd K. Packer shared his faith about the cleansing power of Jesus in his poem "Washed Clean" as part of his April Conference talk.[3] While those examples are of personally composed pieces, poetry from many authors is often used in General Conference messages. The current President of the Church, Thomas S. Monson, is an avid lover of poetry and has often referenced it in his own talks.

Harvest: Contemporary Mormon Poems (1989), edited by Eugene England and Dennis Clark, and Fire in the Pasture: 21st Century Mormon Poets (2011), edited by Tyler Chadwick, are the preeminent collections of contemporary Mormon poetry.[4]

The Association for Mormon Letters has given awards for poetry nearly every year since 1977 as part of the AML Awards.

Notable LDS poets[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ ELDERS' JOURNAL OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER DAY SAINTS. Vol. I. No. 3.] Far West, Missouri, July, 1838. Whole No. 3.
  2. ^ Bruce R. McConkie, “The Testimony of Jesus,” Ensign, Jul 1972, 109
  3. ^ Boyd K. Packer, “Washed Clean,” Ensign, May 1997, 9
  4. ^ "Fire in the Pasture: Gleaning After the Harvest" by Michael R. Collings
  5. ^ Susan Noyes Anderson's poetry site

External links[edit]