Sunday, August 22, 2010


Sarah Von over at Yes & Yes had Mary Oliver's Summer Day up today, and it got me to thinking about my favorite Mary Oliver poem. Thank you Sarah for the inspiration!

This poem makes me think about getting up off the couch to do anything about which might be procrastinating:
  • About getting my life on the track I want it to be. 
  • About losing the weight. 
  • About applying to school. 
  • About getting my papers done. 
  • About saving my money towards my down payment for my dream house. 
  • About writing that next short story. 
  • About asking that guy out for a drink.

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice--
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do--
determined to save
the only life you could save.

© Mary Oliver

I'm off to start saving my own life - how about you?  Any plans to save yours?  Share!

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