Book Review: Mary Oliver's A Thousand Mornings

From my Goodreads:

Mary Oliver is prolific enough that whenever I pick up a new book by her, I feel a moment's trepidation that "this time" may be the time that she disappoints me - that what she writes will leave me feeling flat. And every time, thankfully, she disappoints that feeling. A Thousand Mornings is simply amazing with more of Mary Oliver's observances and experiences of the world around her - at once specific to her own backyard, but able to expand to make it everyone's backyard - the World.

If you need to clean out the clutter that living tends to leave in your mind, body, and soul, pick up A Thousand Mornings, or really any book by Mary Oliver and let it roll into you, like wave after wave.

From the poem Hum, Hum:


The resurrection of the morning.
The mystery of the night.
The hummingbird's wings.
The excitement of thunder.
The rainbow in the waterfall.
Wild mustard, that rough blaze of the fields.
The mockingbird, replaying the songs of his
The bluebird with its unambitious warble
   simple yet sufficient.

The shining fish. The beak of the crow.
The new colt who came to me and leaned
   against the fence
that I might put my hands upon his warm body
   and know no fear.

Also the words of poets
a hundred or hundreds of years dead -
their words that would not be held back.


Oh the house of denial has thick walls
and very small windows
and whoever lives there, little by little,
will turn to stone.

In those years I did everything I could do
and I did it in the dark -
I mean, without understanding.

I ran away.
I ran away again.
Then, again, I ran away.

They were awfully little, those bees,
and maybe frightened,
yet unstoppably they flew on, somewhere,
to live their life.

                     Hum, hum, hum.

Image via 92nd Street Y


Loki's Log said…
Awesome post. Post your poetry. Please.
Writer said…
Loki, I haven't written any poetry in forever. Obviously, 500 word short stories are pretty hard for me to come by too. LOL

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