Asaph's Cow: About

Asaph's Cow, the title for the U.S.F. student literary magazine, was derived from two sources. Asaph was a Levite and one of the leaders of David's choir. He is credited with writing Psalms 50 and 73-83. The books of 1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, and Ezra mention the "sons of Asaph," who may simply have been his descendents. However, other commentators suggest the "sons of Asaph" were most likely a group of poets who recognized Asaph as their mentor and model.

The second half of the title was inspired by a quotation from an essay titled "The Bottles Become New, Too," by the contemporary American poet Richard Wilbur:

It is the province of poems to make some order in the world, but poets can't afford to forget that there is a reality of things which survives all orders great and small. Things are. The cow is there. No poetry can have any strength unless it continually bashes itself against the reality of things.

As members of a Christian liberal arts university, we should necessarily be involved in bashing our faith against the reality of things. Indeed, most of the questions we explore examine the mysterious connections between a divine order and the apparent chaos of a fallen world. As writers at the University of Sioux Falls seek to negotiate the tensions between the ideal and the real through the use of crafted and artful language, Asaph's Cow seems an appropriately meaningful title for such an endeavor.

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