Thursday, October 11, 2007


Provincetown - Photo by S. Auberle
"Be ignited or be gone."
- Mary Oliver
Mary Oliver, a fine, fine poet and my hero(ine) lives in Provincetown. All the days I was there I searched for her--stores, faces, beaches, roads. Not that I expected to find her, but oh what a fine thing that would have been... Here is one of her poems that is a favorite of mine:
"You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you of mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting--
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things."


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This poem is my all-time favorite. I have memorized it and phrases of it pop up from my heart when they are most needed.

I would have searched for Mary O. too. I bet you did find her--in the wildflowers, beach rocks, wild geese..

Your blog is still beautiful. It's nice to be back!

7:25 PM  
Anonymous mimi said...


I think you're right--that may have been her in the red fox suit I saw trotting across the dunes one foggy morning...

7:46 AM  

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