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Posts Tagged ‘Mary OLiver writings and poems’


I missed blogging yesterday.

It was cloudy here and it is still cloudy now. I got lazy and just read. What would your  reaction be if you find more books of  one of your favorite authors?  Take a guess. It’s Mary Oliver of course. I finished Felicity in one sitting  and I got so inspired reading. Just started on Blue Iris.  It is a slow read though because I like to imagine those places and things  she described in the book. It is a  rich collection of  poems,  essays, and of Mary Oliver’s classic works on flowers, trees, and plants. When these words uplift the soul, one feels blessed and happy. I am re-posting some poems from her Felicity book.

This one is entitled The Gift.

Be still, my soul, and steadfast.
Earth and heaven both are still watching
though time is draining from the clock
and your walk, that was confident and quick,
has become slow.

So, be slow if you must, but let
the heart still play its true part.
Love still as once you loved, deeply
and without patience. Let God and the world
know you are grateful.That the gift has been given.

Then there is this short one called  Everything.

Everything that was broken has
forgotten its brokenness. I live
now in a sky-house, through every
window the sun. Also your presence.
Our touching, our stories. Earthly
and holy both. How can this be, but
it is. Every day has something in
it whose name is forever.

Got this third one online:

There are still so many lovely words there and I am keeping them deep in my heart. I have seven books of Mary Oliver now including the lovely and thick hardbound copy of Devotions.

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For those who don’t read my favorite poet  Mary Oliver, this is a borrowed title from one of her lovely works. A Thousand Mornings is a book of poems, a small volume with a silky cover. Just love rereading it.

The last time I wrote about the same title was at the end of August 2018, almost a year now. So what’s it’s all about? It is a month-ender blog. I usually summarize what happened the past month and what I expect the following month. This time though, June was a bit too silent for me. Don’t get me wrong, I love silence and I love the quiet that each day brings. Just sometimes I think I am becoming a recluse. I am still active though on social media, aware of what is happening around, disappointed, dispirited and discouraged by what is happening in our country. I won’t delve on that though, it is too early to whine.

Except for visits to the doctor and labs, family day the other week for Josef’s birthday, the usual twice a month marketing and weekly grocery shopping, everything was quiet.

A year ago, I wrote these lines on my wall at Facebook and I just saw it on memories:

Time flies too soon and June is rapidly coming to a close. It’s been a lovely month spent reading a lot and gardening despite the heat. I hope the month of July would be kind to my weary bones and aching joints.

Got same wishes for this month  of July, maybe more time to read and complete my Goodread’s Reading Challenge. I’ve been cleaning my e-reader lately, deleting those titles that I have already read. I saved those titles that I want to reread.

I am trying to avoid eating sweets but the other day, Jovy made coffee jelly, mango float and mango panna cotta. Just had a few bites. Yesterday, it was a home-made Fudge brownie for our afternoon snack. I am due for blood-sugar testing anytime soon.  I am just too lazy to go back for more lab tests. Maybe when it stops raining, I will. I am feeling good, thank God.

All night my heart makes its way
however it can over the rough ground
of uncertainties, but only until night
meets and then is overwhelmed by
morning, the light deepening, the
wind easing and just waiting, as I
too wait (and when have I ever been
disappointed?) for redbird to sing” 
― Mary Oliver, A  Thousand Mornings

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The Gardener (Mary Oliver)

Have I lived enough?
Have I loved enough?
Have I considered Right Action enough, have I
come to any conclusion?
Have I experienced happiness with sufficient gratitude?
Have I endured loneliness with grace?

I say this, or perhaps I’m just thinking it.
Actually, I probably think too much.

Then I step out into the garden,
where the gardener, who is said to be a simple man,
is tending his children, the roses.

I just love these words from Mary Oliver. She is one of my favorite poets. Yesterday, I  harvested almost a kilo of kalamansi (Philippine lime). There were plenty more but I was afraid to use the ladder to pick them.

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I think I need this for now…..

The Journey
 
One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice–
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do–
determined to save
the only life you could save.
   – Mary Oliver
Mary Oliver is one of my favorite poets. I have two of her books. From time to time I visit her site to be updated.

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Been touched by these words.  Good morning everyone.

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I am excited. Truly.

A few days ago, I saw this on Mary Oliver’s timeline. Her new book Upstream will be released in a month and I just hope this time I would be able to find a copy.

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It’s the newest collection of Mary Oliver’s essays.  I’m always on the lookout for Mary Oliver’s quotes online  and luckily I found one on Blogger. Would you believe, the author quoted  a poem of Mary  every day for a year and did a short write-up of what those words meant  in  her life?  I am still on the first few entries but I was able to find some poems which are not included in the only two books I have of Mary Oliver, New And Selected Poems, Vol. 1 and the lovely edition of A Thousand Mornings.

Then I found these on her wall too and I was l smiling like crazy. Her words inspire me, lift me up and give me that boost I sorely need when I feel down. To appreciate  the beauty of the  natural world around us, what bliss!

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One of my favorite poems is this, The 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.

 

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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.

– Mary Oliver

 

I am sure one of my favorite authors,, Mary Oliver would not mind if I borrow the title of her poem. I often blog about her and how I enjoy reading her writings, simply worded and yet they have deep meanings that touch the heart and the soul.

The sun is up and I could feel its warmth on my face although at the moment it is playing hide and seek with the clouds. We are still experiencing southwest monsoon and there is another storm coming but at least we could enjoy the weekend without worrying about flash flood and heavy downpour.

Yesterday, I finally finished cleaning our bookshelves, sorting books  and arranging them according to authors. The books  Nissa, Josef and I  have collected over the years  are all placed on the higher shelves  along with the lovely ones (craft books, Calvin and Hobbes comic books which my son collects, mythology and some non-fiction).  Every time I do some dusting here, I always read a few titles and remember the times my kids and I bought them. Some are gifts from close friends who know of our penchant for reading. I can’t  resist  re-reading  the boxed set of Nick Bantock’s The Griffin & Sabine Trilogy. IMG_6174Years ago ( I don’t remember now), my sister-in-law sent me this set as a birthday gift and it is one of the treasures that I have in my book collection. IMG_6176IMG_6175 The three books are actually my introduction to an epistolary novel, work of fiction written through letters but what makes it so lovely to read is that, the letters are  actually written on real stationeries with attached envelopes to boot.  It makes me smile reading these lovely letters again.  The Griffin and Sabine story is an extraordinary tale of love, beauty and art.

Believe me when I say that I again found duplicate copies of some books from authors that I collect. It’s a good thing they are just mass-produced paperbacks. For a while, I enjoyed reading e-books, but there is nothing like holding a good book in your hands, lovingly turning the pages and exploring  another world in another time.

Do you love reading? Do you also collect certain authors in your bookshelf?

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Okay, I am reviving my month-ender and  “happy new month” blog. I used to do it in some of my posts but sometimes, in the midst of daily living, you forget things that were part of your routine.

May has quietly faded into June  and  as always it left something to cherish and to treasure. It was terribly hot but the afternoon showers that we got during the last week  somehow diffused the humid feel of the month. Yesterday, I visited my daughter at her office at BPI to get a package  sent by a friend from the US. I took an FX taxi from our place to Ayala Avenue and along the way I was like a child getting re-acquainted with an old place and taking note of changes that were not there thirteen years ago. Thirteen years, seems so long  ago –  yes, it’s been thirteen years since I left Bank of the Philippine Islands  when I availed of an early retirement to take care of my two kids.  Seeing new faces  but looking for old ones who were my former office mates, I now can’t imagine myself as part of the young crowd waiting for elevator rides  and beating the 8:30am rush  to log  in to work. I was with BPI for more than twenty-one years, right after I graduated from college. Waking up early, car pooling,  early morning masses at Greenbelt chapel, lunch breaks and quick walks to Glorietta, afternoon rush to share a ride with friends on the way home, the routine of a working mom, they came rushing back when I saw the facade of BPI. Ayala Avenue has changed of course with more high-rise buildings sprouting from every nook and cranny, it’s after all the Makati Central Business District. What I noticed though was there were lots of people lining up the sidewalk of Ayala Avenue smoking. I am glad I brought a face mask. During my time, smokers just stay at the back of our building at the open parking space. Why can’t they totally prohibit smoking in public?

Sometime last October, I wrote a blog on the newest book of Mary Oliver, A Thousand Mornings dreaming of having a copy of it when it’s published. It has become one of my top-rated posts  although it was more of me than the book. Yesterday, I finally got hold of it and perused each word, smiling like crazy holding it in my hands, enjoying the feel of  silk because the dust jacket  is so smooth to the touch.

from odette

This is my second book of Mary Oliver and I love how she portrays nature in so many different ways. It feels like you are beside a brook or just looking at an unknown bloom by the wayside or discovering the glint of the moon on a dark night.  Odette, who has become a close friend sent me all these, three books, two latest publications from my favorite author Richard Paul Evans and a copy of A Thousand Mornings together with a hard drive which she says I could use for all the shots that I want to save. Speaking of blessings, they pour in a thousand ways too.

Let me share one of her poems with you. Reading her words always keep me inspired, silently smiling to myself and telling the old me, I am lucky, aren’t I?  The  journey is long but I am blessed.

The Gardener
 
Have I lived enough?
Have I loved enough?
Have I considered Right Action enough, have I
      come to any conclusion?
Have I experienced happiness with sufficient gratitude?
Have I endured loneliness with grace?
 
I say this, or perhaps I’m just thinking it.
       Actually, I probably think too much.
 
Then I step out into the garden,
where the gardener, who is said to be a simple man,
       is tending his children, the roses.

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IMG_3427 Then she said:

I have a notebook with me all the time, and I begin scribbling a few words. When things are going well, the walk does not get anywhere; I finally just stop and write.

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Sometimes, I  need only to stand wherever I am to be blessed – Mary Oliver

 

( photo credit goes to my daughter Nissa who took this shot at Capones Island)

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