Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Mary Oliver, Poet & Liberator

I can't wait to get my hands on the new Mary Oliver book of poems called Evidence. She is one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE poets.

The Journey by Ms. Oliver helped me to peel myself away from my mother. Her care taking was beyond my ability and in spite of the many long years of it -my guilt over her entry into a nursing home was legion. This poem gave me the courage to do what I knew I had to do. It helped facilitate my freedom.


One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice--
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do--
determined to save
the only life you could save.

1 comment:

weilandpj said...

Thanks Kim! This is the exact piece I needed to read this fine Monday morning after Easter. It speaks to my need to keep going with my business and ignore the tripping steps of distraction which would lead to the option of not moving forward.

Thanks for your encouraging work!!!