Sunday, 28 May 2017

Mockingbirds

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Mockingbirds - Mary Oliver

This morning
two mockingbirds
in the green field
were spinning and tossing
the white ribbons of their songs into the air.
I had nothing
better to do than listen. I mean this seriously.

In Greece,
a long time ago, an old couple opened their door
to two strangers who were,
it soon appeared, not men at all,
but gods.
It is my favorite story-- how the old couple
had almost nothing to give
but their willingness to be attentive--
but for this alone the gods loved them
and blessed them--
when they rose
out of their mortal bodies,
like a million particles of water
from a fountain,
the light
swept into all the corners of the cottage,
and the old couple,
shaken with understanding, bowed down--
but still they asked for nothing
but the difficult life
which they had already.
And the gods smiled, as they vanished, clapping their great wings.

Wherever it was
I was supposed to be this morning-- whatever it was I said
I would be doing--
I was standing
at the edge of the field-- I was hurrying
through my own soul, opening its dark doors-- I was leaning out;
I was listening. 

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