Morning Poem by Mary Oliver
Every morning the world is created.
Under the orange sticks of the sun the heaped ashes of the night turn into leaves again and fasten themselves to the high branches–and the ponds appear like black cloth on which are painted islands of summer lilies.
If it is your nature to be happy you will swim away along the soft trails for hours, your imagination alighting everywhere.
And if your spirit carries within it the thorn that is heavier than lead–if it’s all you can do to keep on trudging–there is still somewhere deep within you a beast shouting that the earth is exactly what it wanted–
each pond with its blazing lilies is a prayer heard and answered lavishly, every morning, whether or not you have ever dared to be happy, whether or not you have ever dared to pray.
from Dream Work (1986) by Mary Oliver © Mary Oliver
Why I Wake Early by Mary Oliver
Hello, sun in my face. Hello, you who make the morning and spread it over the fields and into the faces of the tulips and the nodding morning glories, and into the windows of, even, the miserable and the crotchety–
best preacher that ever was, dear star, that just happens to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness, to ease us with warm touching, to hold us in the great hands of light–
good morning, good morning, good morning.
Watch, now , how I start my day in happiness, in kindness.
Mary Oliver from New and Selected Poems Volume II
Mary Oliver: A private person by nature, Mary Oliver has given very few interviews over the years. Instead, she prefers to let her work speak for itself. And speak it has, for the past five decades, to countless readers. The New York Times recently acknowledged Mary Oliver as “far and away, this country’s best-selling poet.” Born in a small town in Ohio, Oliver published her first book of poetry in 1963 at the age of 28; No Voyage and Other Poems, originally printed in the UK by Dent Press, was reissued in the United States in 1965 by Houghton Mifflin. Oliver has since published many works of poetry and prose.
I want to thank my good friend and fellow writer Diana for sharing her gorgeous photos of spring in Newfoundland where she lives. How amazing to awaken to spring and visions like these right outside your door. On those days when I am fortunate to be able to take a walk, I always find something delightful for my eyes and my spirit. So watch for the poetry that nature so generously gives.