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broodings from the burrow

February 2, 2013

bloggers’ silent poetry reading: mary oliver
posted by soe 5:54 am

Today is the eighth annual Bloggers’ (Silent) Poetry Reading in honor of St. Brigid, patron saint of poetry. It seems that organization of the “festival” has moved onto Facebook, so check there for other poems to read.

This year, I happen to have Mary Oliver’s latest collection of poems, A Thousand Mornings, out from the library, so I thought I’d share a couple of her poems, one short and one a bit longer (although not long in the grand scheme of poetry):

Three Things to Remember
       ~Mary Oliver

As long as you’re dancing, you can
    break the rules.
Sometimes breaking the rules is just
    extending the rules.

Sometimes there are no rules.


And Bob Dylan Too
      ~Mary Oliver

“Anything worth thinking about is worth
    singing about.”

Which is why we have
songs of praise, songs of love, songs
    of sorrow

Songs to the gods, who have
    so many names.

Songs the shepherds sing, on the
    lonely mountains, while the sheep
        are honoring the grass, by eating it.

The dance-songs of the bees, to tell
    where the flowers, suddenly, in the
        morning light, have opened.

A chorus of many, shouting to heaven,
    or at it, or pleading.

Or that greatest of love affairs, a violin
    and a human body.

And a composer, maybe hundreds of years dead.

I think of Schubert, scribbling on a café
        Thank you, thank you.

Feel free to participate on your own blog or Facebook page (or, if you like haiku or other short poems, Twitter) or to add a poem of your own choosing in my comments if you don’t have an online space you call your own.

My previous years of participation in this event have brought us poems by Wislawa Szymborska, Stuart Dischell, Jean Esteve, John Frederick Nims, Mary Oliver, Grace Paley, Heather McHugh, and Barbara Hamby, all of which are worth a re-read should you be so inclined.

Category: arts. There is/are 1 Comment.

Thank you for sharing two of my favorite Mary Olive poems.

Comment by margene 02.02.13 @ 6:58 pm