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Paul Murray was born in Newcastle, Co. Down in 1947. He entered the Dominican Order in 1966 and currently lives in Rome where he teaches at the Angelicum University. He has published four poetry collections, Ritual Poems (1971), Rites and Meditations (1972), and more recently The Absent Fountain (1992) and These Black Stars (2003), the latter two from Dedalus Press and reissued here in a single volume. He is also the author of several prose works, among them TS Eliot and Mysticism: The Secret History of ‘Four Quartets’ (Macmillan, 1994) and Aquinas: The Unread Vision – The Bible, Mysticism and Poetry (Bloomsbury, 2013).