Monthly Archives: December 2013

Grandmother’s Pleasure

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The Bleeding-heart
by Mary Oliver
from New and Selected Poems
Volume Two

I know a bleeding-heart plant that has thrived
for sixty years if not more, and has never
missed a spring without rising and spreading
itself into a glossy bush, with many small red
hearts dangling. Don’t you think that deserves
a little thought? The woman who planted it
has been gone for a long time, and everyone
who saw it in that time has also died or moved
away and so, like so many stories, this one can’t
get finished properly. Most things that are
important, have you noticed, lack a certain
neatness. More delicious, anyway, is to
remember my grandmother’s pleasure when
the dissolve of winter was over and the green
knobs appeared and began to rise, and to cre-
ate their many hearts. One would say she was
a simple woman, made happy by simple
things. I think this was true. And more than
once, in my long life, I have wished to be her.

 

 

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Infinitely Inventive

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Jazz 2012 by Drea Jensen If you take the time to look or listen through the things that are seemingly hectic, you can find the true beauty that they hold.  http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/jazz-2012-drea-jensen.html

Jazz 2012 by Drea Jensen
If you take the time to look or listen through the things that are seemingly hectic, you can find the true beauty that they hold.
http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/jazz-2012-drea-jensen.html

The Kitten

More amazed than anything
I took the perfectly black
stillborn kitten
with the one large eye
in the center of its small forehead
from the house cat’s bed
and buried it in a field
behind the house.

I suppose I could have given it
to a museum,
I could have called the local
newspaper.

But instead I took it out into the field
and opened the earth
and put it back
saying, it was real,
saying, life is infinitely inventive,
saying, what other amazements
lie in the dark seed of the earth, yes,

I think I did right to go out alone
and give it back peacefully, and cover the place
with the reckless blossoms of weeds.

By Mary Oliver

HELP ALICE DONOVAN FIGHT LEUKEMIA

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Daydream 2012 by Drea Jensen Often, the most wonderful emotions in our lives come from the most unexpected situations. http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/daydream-2012-drea-jensen.htm

Daydream 2012 by Drea Jensen
This painting has been donated to a raffle dedicated to helping Alice.
http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/daydream-2012-drea-jensen.htm

HELP ALICE DONOVAN FIGHT LEUKEMIA
A bone marrow transplant is Alice’s best chance for a cure.  Nobody in Alice’s family is a match, so the Donovans’ have arranged a bone marrow donor drive with “Be the Match” (http://www.bethematchfoundation.org/goto/hopeforalice) to help find a match on:
Saturday, January 4, 2014, 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Tarsier Room at O’Reilly Media
1005 Gravenstein Hwy. North, Sebastopol
The test to see if you are a match is a simple, quick, and painless cheek swab.  And if you go on to donate, 75% of the time it is a nonsurgical outpatient procedure.
If you cannot come to the donor drive on January 4, you can also sign up online at http://join.bethematch.org/hopeforalice and ‘Be the Match’ will send you a simple kit to take your own swab that you can mail back in for testing.
Donors must be between the ages of 18 and 44 and in good health.
Please consider getting tested to ‘Be the Match’ for Alice!

Inseparable

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Sanctuary 2012 by Drea Jensen The natural world holds a temple, a safe place for growth. A healing shelter for seeds to germinate and take root. http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/sanctuary-2012-drea-jensen.html

Sanctuary 2012 by Drea Jensen
The natural world holds a temple, a safe place for growth.
A healing shelter for seeds to germinate and take root.
http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/sanctuary-2012-drea-jensen.html

 

Gannets

by Mary Oliver

I am watching the white gannets
blaze down into the water
with the power of blunt spears
and a stunning accuracy–
even though the sea is riled and boiling
and gray with fog
and the fish
are nowhere to be seen,
they fall, they explode into the water
like white gloves,
then they vanish,
then they climb out again,
from the cliff of the wave,
like white flowers–
and still I think
that nothing in this world moves
but as a positive power–
even the fish, finning down into the current
or collapsing
in the red purse of the beak,
are only interrupted from their own pursuit
of whatever it is
that fills their bellies–
and I say:
life is real,
and pain is real,
but death is an imposter,
and if I could be what once I was,
like the wolf or the bear
standing on the cold shore,
I would still see it–
how the fish simply escape, this time,
or how they slide down into a black fire
for a moment,
then rise from the water inseparable
from the gannets’ wings.

Visited This World

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Kiva 2011 by Drea Jensen Every person has creativity in them whether they can see it or not. Some show it on the outside and some keep it hidden, but everyone has the capability of letting it out.  http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/kiva-2011-drea-jensen.html

Kiva 2011 by Drea Jensen
Every person has creativity in them whether they can see it or not. Some show it on the outside and some keep it hidden, but everyone has the capability of letting it out.
http://dreajensengallery.artistwebsites.com/featured/kiva-2011-drea-jensen.html

WHEN DEATH COMES

   When death comes
   like the hungry bear in autumn;
   when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

   to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
   when death comes
   like the measle-pox

   when death comes
   like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

   I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
   what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

   And therefore I look upon everything
   as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
   and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
   and I consider eternity as another possibility,

   and I think of each life as a flower, as common
   as a field daisy, and as singular,

   and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
   tending, as all music does, toward silence,

   and each body a lion of courage, and something
   precious to the earth.

   When it's over, I want to say all my life
   I was a bride married to amazement.
   I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

   When it's over, I don't want to wonder
   if I have made of my life something particular, and real.

   I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
   or full of argument.

   I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.

~ Mary Oliver ~

Pain and Logic

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Singapore
Mary Oliver

In Singapore, in the airport,
A darkness was ripped from my eyes.
In the women’s restroom, one compartment stood open.
A woman knelt there, washing something in the white bowl.

Disgust argued in my stomach
and I felt, in my pocket, for my ticket.

A poem should always have birds in it.
Kingfishers, say, with their bold eyes and gaudy wings.
Rivers are pleasant, and of course trees.
A waterfall, or if that’s not possible, a fountain rising and falling.
A person wants to stand in a happy place, in a poem.

When the woman turned I could not answer her face.
Her beauty and her embarrassment struggled together,
and neither could win.
She smiled and I smiled. What kind of nonsense is this?
Everybody needs a job.

Yes, a person wants to stand in a happy place, in a poem.
But first we must watch her as she stares down at her labor,
which is dull enough.
She is washing the tops of the airport ashtrays, as big as hubcaps,
with a blue rag.
Her small hands turn the metal, scrubbing and rinsing.
She does not work slowly, nor quickly, like a river.
Her dark hair is like the wing of a bird.

I don’t doubt for a moment that she loves her life.
And I want her to rise up from the crust and the slop and
fly down to the river.
This probably won’t happen.
But maybe it will.
If the world were only pain and logic, who would want it?

Of course, it isn’t.
Neither do I mean anything miraculous, but only
the light that can shine out of a life. I mean
the way she unfolded and refolded the blue cloth,
The way her smile was only for my sake; I mean
the way this poem is filled with trees, and birds.