Monthly Archives: August 2015

comes to visit

Paintings by Drea

Paintings by Drea

Can You Imagine?
By Mary Oliver

For example, what the trees do
not only in lightning storms
or the watery dark of a summer’s night
or under the white nets of winter
but now, and now, and now – whenever
we’re not looking. Surely you can’t imagine
they don’t dance, from the root up, wishing
to travel a little, not cramped so much as wanting
a better view, or more sun, or just as avidly
more shade – surely you can’t imagine they just
stand there loving every
minute of it, the birds or the emptiness, the dark rings
of the years slowly and without a sound
thickening, and nothing different unless the wind,
and then only in its own mood, comes
to visit, surely you can’t imagine
patience, and happiness, like that.

comfort of a poem

Paintings by Drea

Paintings by Drea

Mysteries, Yes
By Mary Oliver

Truly, we live with mysteries too marvelous
to be understood.

How grass can be nourishing in the
mouths of the lambs.
How rivers and stones are forever
in allegiance with gravity,
while we ourselves dream of rising.

How two hands touch and the bonds
will never be broken.
How people come, from delight or the
scars of damage,
to the comfort of a poem.

Let me keep my distance, always, from those
who think they have the answers.

Let me keep company always with those who say
“Look!” and laugh in astonishment,
and bow their heads.

almost morning

Paintings by Drea

Paintings by Drea

Night Herons
by Mary Oliver

Some herons were fishing in the robes of the night
At a low hour of the water’s body,
And the fish I suppose, were full
Of fish happiness in those transparent inches
Even as, over and over, the beaks jacked down
And the narrow bodies were lifted
With every quick sally,
And that was the end of them as far as we know-
Though, what do we know except that death
Is so everywhere and so entire-
Pummeling and felling,
Or sometimes,
Like this, appearing
Through such a thing door-
One stab and you’re through!
And what then?
Why, then it was almost morning,
And one by one the birds opened their wings and flew.


Paintings by Drea

Paintings by Drea

What Do We Know
Mary Oliver

The sky cleared
I was standing
under a tree.
and there were stars in the sky
that were also themselves
at the moment
at which moment
my right hand
was holding my left hand
which was holding the tree
which was filled with stars
and the soft rain —
imagine! Imagine!
the long and wondrous journeys
still to be ours.

moon and water

Paintings by Drea

Paintings by Drea

Moon and Water
by Mary Oliver

I wake and spend
the last hours
of darkness
with no one

but the moon.
She listens
to my complaints
like the good

companion she is
and comforts me surely
with her light.
But she, like everyone,

has her own life.
So finally I understand
that she has turned away,
is no longer listening.

She wants me
to refold myself
into my own life.
And, bending close,

as we all dream of doing,
she rows with her white arms
through the dark water
which she adores.


Paintings by Drea

Paintings by Drea

Dear Heart Comes Home
By Mary Oliver

I keep pulling it out – I keep pulling it out –

The old map of my inner path.

I squint closely at it,

Trying to see some hidden road

That maybe I’ve missed.

But there’s nothing there now

Except some well-traveled paths.

They have seen my footsteps often,

Held my laughter, caught my tears.

I keep going over the old map

But now the roads lead nowhere,

A meaningless wilderness

Where life is dull and futile.

“Toss away the old map,” she says.

“You must be kidding!” I reply.

She looks at me with Sarah eyes

And repeats, “Toss it away.

It’s of no use where you are going.”

“I have to have a map?” I cry.

“Even if it takes me nowhere.

I can’t be without a direction.”

She says, “So why not let go, be free?”

So there I am – tossing away the old map,

Sadly, fearfully, putting it behind me.

“Whatever will I do?” wails my security.

“Trust me” says my mid-life soul.

No map, no specific directions.

No “This way ahead” or “Take a left.”

How will I know where to go?

How will I find my way? No map!

But then my mid-life soul whispers:

“There was a time before maps

When pilgrims traveled by the stars.”

It is time for the pilgrim in me

To travel in the dark,

To learn to read the stars

That shine in my soul

I will walk deeper

Into the dark of my night,

I will wait for the stars,

Trust their guidance,

And let their light be enough for me.