Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Mary Oliver: Today

Mary Oliver's new book, A Thousand Mornings, has, as all her books do, a handful of very fine pieces. It's well worth reading; I find myself returning to poem after poem. There is a delicate simplicity, a certain lyric sleight of hand she performs that transports us to that place of awe and revelation. Here is a poem from that collection: 


Today I'm flying low and I'm
not saying a word.
I'm letting all the voodoos of ambition sleep.

The world goes on as it must,
the bees in the garden rumbling a little,
the fish leaping, the gnats getting eaten.
And so forth.

But I'm taking the day off.
Quiet as a feather.
I hardly move though really I'm traveling
a terrific distance.

Stillness. One of the doors
into the temple.

~ Mary Oliver

Wednesday Haiku will return next week. 

on a snowy day
the temple is packed...
pigeons, sparrows
 translated by David G. Lanoue 


Send a single haiku for the Wednesday Haiku feature. Here's how.

Go to the LitRock web site for a list of all 149 songs


Anonymous said...

Great poem by Oliver. I've felt like that all over the holiday break (and hopefully will until the new semester starts). As always, love the Issa, and you picked a particularly resonant one for today.
- Andrew

Anonymous said...

I have recently read this wonderful book of poems. Mary Oliver is a national treasure. Thanks for having this poem here today. And the Issa, always a wonder.
Mary Ahearn

Charles Gramlich said...

Yeah, I like that one. Would appreciate some stillness, but I can't today.

Unknown said...

Many thanks, Don... My all time favorite of hers is "Mindful"... "the prayers that are made/ out of grasses?"

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Andrew! Good to hear from you and glad to hear you are getting some respite in between semesters. And very glad that this one hit the mark. Hope to see you (relatively) soon. Don

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

I second that, Mary. The book is like getting an at once light, but deeply insightful, letter from an old friend.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Cheers, Charles. Glad you liked it.

Issa's Untidy Hut said...

Merrill ... You sent me off to read Mindful again - now I owe you!