A classic poem by Mary Oliver, “The Summer Day”, presented by Donna.
Mary Oliver is by far my favorite poet and essayist. The way she pays attention, how nature left her amazed, how she continued to be aware and amazed by the everyday…I can only hope to live up to her example. I consider her a mentor of sorts and her instructions are penned on the opening pages of all my writing notebooks:
Instructions for living a life:
Tell about it
The Summer Day
Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean-
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
More about Mary Oliver – https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/mary-oliver