Posts tagged ‘poet’

June 30, 2012

The Poet Visits the Museum of Fine Arts by Mary Oliver

by Jillian Douglas

My readers,

I am currently in Manhattan this weekend, visiting my brother and his girlfriend. It’s been a lovely little trip! Yesterday we went to the Met, full of wondrous things (like Van Gogh and Monet, my favorite). I thought it fitting to share this poem I found in my inbox today:

The Poet Visits the Museum of Fine Arts by Mary Oliver

For a long time
     I was not even
        in this world, yet
           every summer

every rose
     opened in perfect sweetness
        and lived
           in gracious repose,

in its own exotic fragrance,
     in its huge willingness to give
        something, from its small self,
           to the entirety of the world.

I think of them, thousands upon thousands,
     in many lands,
        whenever summer came to them,
           rising

out of the patience of patience,
     to leaf and bud and look up
        into the blue sky
           or, with thanks,

into the rain
     that would feed
        their thirsty roots
           latched into the earth—

sandy or hard, Vermont or Arabia,
     what did it matter,
        the answer was simply to rise
           in joyfulness, all their days.

Have I found any better teaching?
     Not ever, not yet.
        Last week I saw my first Botticelli
           and almost fainted,

and if I could I would paint like that
     but am shelved somewhere below, with a few songs
        about roses: teachers, also, of the ways
           toward thanks, and praise.

 

You shall see more of me soon. Pinky promise.

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