Wild Geese

Wild Geese
 
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.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
 
from Dream Work by Mary Oliver
published by Atlantic Monthly Press
© Mary Oliver
Another Mary Oliver poem. I adore this one. What a wonderful reminder that the world is bigger than just you and me. When I am stressed, or lonely, or upset, or saddened, the world seems to narrow so that my problems hang heavy and huge. “Wild Geese” comes as such a good reminder that there is so much more out there: the despair of others, yes, but also rain and geese and joy, and the world offering itself up to our imaginations.
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