Discovery in the Archives: The prayerful poetry of Mother Angelique Ayers

Mother Angelique Ayers, 1954

Among the archives’ treasures are clues to the personal talents of Our Lady of the Lake founders like Mother Angelique Ayers.

Mother Angelique’s individual files in the archives contain many examples of her written work from very early in her academic career. However, some of her most tender compositions are short hand- or type-written verses. Many times, she composed verses to be printed inside Christmas cards sent out by the Sisters. Her poems are prayers or musings, sometimes sentimental, sometimes cheery, but always reverent.

Verse inside a 1953 Christmas card

Though undated, Mother Angelique may have written the following short poem on a gloomy day:

Autumn,

Do you splash

Your colors with such waste

Artist Divine must soften them

With haze?

Though not written by her, another verse in Mother Angelique’s papers sheds further light on her talents, personality, and affinity for poetry. Note the annotation “She played and sang this song.”

 (We are celebrating enduring treasures from Our Lady of the Lake University’s past throughout American Archives Month this October. Visit the Archives in Providence Hall, 6A, for a peak into history, to relive events, or to learn about the fascinating characters in OLLU’s life story. The Archives are open 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday through Wednesday, or by appointment. Call Anna Beyer, x2338, for information.)

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