Sunday, October 31, 2010

Takin' The World Into My Arms.

I keep thinkin' about this poem by Mary Oliver:

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, 'New and Selected Poems, Volume One' p.10

Okay, gettin' back to it.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


Eco Yogini said...

Wow. What a fabulous poem! Thank you so much for sharing this Brooks. :)

Bob Weisenberg said...

I say "Wow" as well. And so Yogic.

I've been thinking a lot about death myself recently. It seems a lot less abstract as I grow older.

Maybe it's the fact that my father passed away in January at the age of 91, which seemed too early because his father lived to 101.

Maybe it's the fact that I've been so immersed in the Bhagavad Gita and other Yoga texts that deal so explicitly with death.

Maybe it's the fact that time seems to be accelerating, so the years seem to be racing rather than meandering by.

Maybe it's the fact that I have four grandkids between the ages of four weeks and three years, which tunes me in to the broader march of generations.

In any case, this poem is marvelous and close to the way I want to feel. I probably never would have seen it if you hadn't posted it here, so thank you.

Bob W.

Meredith LeBlanc said...

Wow #3. This is beautiful, really inspiring. Thank you thank you for sharing this Brooks. ♥♥♥

Emma said...

I'm going to add my "Wow" to this necklace of "Wows" like beads on a thread.
Beautiful and inspiring poem, thank you for posting it Brooks :)

Birdie said...

Brooks, one of my favorite poems by an amazing and very interesting lady poet. I love her work because its so accessible. Sometimes I read it and I feel like she is reading my feelings/emotions/thoughts. Thanks for posting and for sharing with others.

Laura said...

beautiful. I love Mary Oliver...amazing poet.