April 30, 2013


This is just to say that the days are getting longer and our windows all are open, and the house feels thicker, full-lunged, porous, bare-kneed.

This is just to say that we skipped spring here, went straight to summer, sweaty t-shirts and pink brows, bicycles and bicycles and bicycles.

Mostly, though, this is to say that on the first hot day of this new season, I walked with my son to the lake where I'd told him it was time to arrive, and when we came home, for the first time in his life,

he laughed.

April 9, 2013

"Black Oaks"

Okay, not one can write a symphony, or a dictionary,
   or even a letter to an old friend, full of remembrance
   and comfort.

Not one can manage a single sound though the blue jays
   carp and whistle all day in the branches, without 

   the push of the wind. 

But to tell the truth after a while I'm pale with longing 
   for their thick bodies ruckled with lichen 

and you can't keep me from the woods, from the tonnage 
   of their shoulders, and their shining green hair. 

Today is a day like any other: twenty-four hours, a 
   little sunshine, a little rain. 

Listen, says ambition, nervously shifting her weight from 
   one boot to another -- why don't you get going? 

For there I am, in the mossy shadows, under the trees. 

And to tell the truth I don't want to let go of the wrists 
   of idleness, I don't want to sell my life for money, 
   I don't even want to come in out of the rain.

-- by Mary Oliver

What a gorgeous poem, yes? For those of us who get a little drunk by a walk through the woods, Oliver's words are a perfect pocket companion.

Which leads me to a request: can any of you point me to your favorite "place-infused" poem? I'm gearing up for The Poetry of Place workshop I'm leading in May, and I'd like to put together a reading list that hovers with inspiration.  Thanks for the help, friends!