Mary Oliver Quotes
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it is a serious thing // just to be alive / on this fresh morning / in this broken world.
Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift.
I don't ask for the sights in front of me to change, only the depth of my seeing.
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
Instructions for living a life. Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it.
One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began.
Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable.
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.
In this universe we are given two gifts: the ability to love and the ability to question. Which are, at the same time, the fires that warm us and the fires that scorch us.
You must not ever stop being whimsical. And you must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life.
I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. Also in singing, especially when singing is not necessarily prescribed.
Hello, sun in my face. Hello you who made the morning and spread it over the fields...Watch, now, how I start the day in happiness, in kindness.
I held my breath as we do sometimes to stop time when something wonderful has touched us.
The dream of my life is to lie down by a slow river and stare at the light in the trees - to learn something by being nothing
And I say to my heart: rave on.
I want to think again of dangerous and noble things. I want to be light and frolicsome. I want to be improbable and beautiful and afraid of nothing as though I had wings.
So come to the pond, or the river of your imagination, or the harbor of your longing, and put your lips to the world. And live your life.
My work is the world. Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird - equal seekers of sweetness. Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums.
Around me the trees stir in their leaves and call out, Stay awhile.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination.
It's morning, and again I am that lucky person who is in it.
We need beauty because it makes us ache to be worthy of it.
If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don’t hesitate. Give in to it.
There are a hundred paths through the world that are easier than loving. But who wants easier?
We shake with joy, we shake with grief. What a time they have, these two housed as they are in the same body.
... Let us risk the wildest places, Lest we go down in comfort, and despair.
Listen--are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?
You never know / What opportunity / Is going to travel to you, / Or through you.
Look, I want to love this world as though it's the last chance I'm ever going to get to be alive and know it.
When will you have a little pity for every soft thing that walks through the world, yourself included.
Every day I walk out into the world / to be dazzled, then to be reflective.
He is exactly the poem I wanted to write.
Let me keep my mind on what matters, which is my work, which is mostly standing still and learning to be astonished.
I saw that worrying had come to nothing and gave it up. And took my old body and went out into the morning, and sang.
Wild sings the bird of the heart in the forests of our lives.
Music: what so many sentences aspire to be.
Poetry isn't a profession, it's a way of life. It's an empty basket; you put your life into it and make something out of that.
Said the river: imagine everything you can imagine, then keep on going.
The stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds, and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own.
Ordinarily, I go to the woods alone. When I'm alone I can hear the almost unhearable sound of the roses singing. If you have ever gone to the woods with me, I must love you very much.
Sometimes I need only to stand wherever I am to be blessed.
And now I understand something so frightening &wonderful- how the mind clings to the road it knows, rushing through crossroads, sticking like lint to the familiar.
Walks work for me. I enter some arena that is neither conscious or unconscious.
Don't we all die someday and someday comes all too soon? What will you do with your own wild, glorious chance at this thing we call life.
But I also say this: that light is an invitation to happiness, and that happiness, when it's done right, is a kind of holiness, palpable and redemptive.
There is only one question: / how to love this world.
Though I play at the edges of knowing, truly I know our part is not knowing, but looking, and touching, and loving
You can have the other words-chance, luck, coincidence, serendipity. I'll take grace. I don't know what it is exactly, but I'll take it.
Because of the dog’s joyfulness, our own is increased. It is no small gift.
I believe in kindness. Also in mischief.