Fall in!

By Erin Anderson
Posted in The Real Deal, on November 01, 2012

My mother is brilliant. She loves poetry and thoughtfully shared this with me. Enjoy this powerful poem by Mary Oliver.


Have you ever tried to enter the long black branches of other lives --
tried to imagine what the crisp fringes, full of honey, hanging
from the branches of the young locust trees, in early morning, feel like?

Do you think this world was only an entertainment for you?

Never to enter the sea and notice how the water divides
with perfect courtesy, to let you in!
Never to lie down on the grass, as though you were the grass!
Never to leap to the air as you open your wings over the dark acorn of your heart!

No wonder we hear, in your mournful voice, the complaint
that something is missing from your life!

Well, there is time left --
fields everywhere invite you into them.

And who will care, who will chide you if you wander away
from wherever you are, to look for your soul?

Quickly, then, get up, put on your coat, leave your desk!

To put one's foot into the door of the grass, which is
the mystery,  and not be afraid!

To the song falling out of the mockingbird's pink mouth,
to the tippets of the honeysuckle, that have opened
in the night

To sit down, like a weed among weeds, and rustle in the wind!

Listen, are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?

While the soul, after all, is only a window,
and the opening of the window no more difficult
than the wakening from a little sleep.

Only last week I went out among the thorns and said
to the wild roses:
deny me not, but suffer my devotion.
Then, all afternoon, I sat among them. 

For how long will you continue to listen to those dark shouters,
caution and prudence?

Fall in! Fall in!


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