February 15, 2013

announcing your place in the family of things


Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
     love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting-
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

–by Mary Oliver, from New & Selected Poems (Harcourt Brace)

(with this soundtrack:)

Internally paired this morning.

Read about Julia Kent’s new found-sound and cello record here, read more about Mary Oliver here. Turner’s paintings go with a lot of complicated, powerful things.

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  • Ahhhhh… this is one of my all-time favorite poems. Those first four lines are perfection (I once slipped them into a card for a friend on his wedding day). Thank you for bringing them to the front of my mind once more!

    John — February 15, 2013 @ 9:48 am

  • That is quite the trifecta, nicely done! “Wild Geese” is one of my all-time favorite poems as well – she really gives a lot of power to ‘meanwhile’, which is generally a fairly simple word. That is also a fantastic cello piece and wonderful painting – who is the painter?

    jimbo — February 15, 2013 @ 8:00 pm

  • Brilliant post.
    All new to me…really helped me this morning.

    Mark — February 17, 2013 @ 7:34 am

  • Oh-my-gosh. You’ve done it again. This is incredible. I can’t tell you how many times you have brightened up my life at exactly the moment I have needed it most. Thank you.

    Mel — February 18, 2013 @ 10:25 am

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

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