Tag: maryoliver


  • if you let me have the ordinary

    “You may have the extraordinary for your province, if you will let me have the ordinary. Give me the obscure life, the cottage of the poor and humble, the workdays of the world, the barren fields, the smallest share of all things but poetic perception. Give me but the eyes to see the things which […]

    Continue reading


  • let me keep my mind on what matters

    “Are my boots old? Is my coat torn? Am I no longer young, and still not half-perfect? Let me keep my mind on what matters, which is my work, which is mostly standing still and learning to be astonished.” Mary Oliver (excerpt from “Messenger”) What is your work? Or rather, the work you most want […]

    Continue reading


  • shake with joy

    Oliver again and again captures the complexity of how it feels to be alive.

    Continue reading


  • soft animals

    Mary Oliver refers to humans as “soft animals” in her beloved poem “Wild Geese.” I think this alternate name for ourselves is a way of releasing our sometimes unmanageable expectations of ourselves. It is interesting that often when we are at the end of our rope we will say, “but I’m only human– I make […]

    Continue reading


  • mary oliver

    mary oliver

    Mary Oliver’s poems are an invitation to give attention to the mundane, daily world. The mundane beautiful world. They are an invitation to linger. To watch a tree in the breeze. Her work is gentle, and lyrical. Revelatory. And it makes “boring” feel good. It levels me after both success and failure. It’s always inviting […]

    Continue reading