Weekend Poems March 2013

 From Parker J. Palmer ..

"A couple of years ago, I was lucky to hear Mary Oliver read her poetry. After the reading, someone in the audience asked her, "What is the purpose of beauty?" You'll find her remarkable answer below.

Mary Oliver's words contain a quiet challenge, as her words often do. On most days I would find the challenge daunting, but today the answer seems clear:

I can be worthy of the beauty around me simply by honouring it and giving myself over to it, ceasing my anxious machinations and allowing myself to be filled with gratitude for beauty wherever it may be found—in nature and human nature..."

("The beautiful woodcut on which I placed Mary Oliver's words is by a Wisconsin artist named Nick Wroblewski, whose website here is well worth exploring. This print, called "Frost Descending," can be seen under Gallery/Recent Prints.")

While I'm with Mary Oliver today. 
I might as well add another.

The Gardener

“Have I lived enough?
Have I loved enough?
Have I considered Right Action enough, have I
come to any conclusion?
Have I experienced happiness with sufficient gratitude?

Have I endured loneliness with grace?
I say this, or perhaps I’m just thinking it.
Actually, I probably think too much.

Then I step out into the garden,
where the gardener, who is said to be a simple man,
is tending his children, the roses.”

~ Mary Oliver

and a bonus one from Tony Hoagland for the weekend

The Word
 Down near the bottom
 of the crossed-out list
 of things you have to do today,

 between "green thread"
 and "broccoli" you find
 that you have pencilled "sunlight."

 Resting on the page, the word
 is as beautiful, it touches you
 as if you had a friend

 and sunlight were a present
 he had sent you from some place distant
 as this morning -- to cheer you up,

 and to remind you that,
 among your duties, pleasure
 is a thing,

 that also needs accomplishing
 Do you remember?
 that time and light are kinds

 of love, and love
 is no less practical
 than a coffee grinder

 or a safe spare tire?
 Tomorrow you may be utterly
 without a clue

 but today you get a telegram,
 from the heart in exile
 proclaiming that the kingdom

 still exists,
 the king and queen alive,
 still speaking to their children,

  to any one among them
 who can find the time,
 to sit out in the sun and listen.
Tony Hoagland
 Image source

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