Matt Donovan is the author of two collections of poetry—Vellum (Mariner, 2007) and the chapbook Ten Burnt Lakes (Tupelo Press, forthcoming 2017)—as well as the collection of essays, A Cloud of Unusual Size and Shape: Meditations on Ruin and Redemption (Trinity University Press, 2016). He is the recipient of a Rome Prize in Literature and a Whiting Award, and is currently collaborating on the chamber opera “Inheritance”. He teaches creative writing at Santa Fe University of Art and Design.

NYR DAILY

Climbing the Eye of God

Pantheon, we say, hauled in from the Greek and meaning all of the gods. More than anything else, this etymology is how we’ve come to agree that the building once served as a place to worship all Roman deities. Yet neither its name nor function is that simple. “Pantheon” seems to have been a kind of nickname, and no one really knows what it was originally called.