Tuesday, October 16, 2012

So this is how

Five A.M in the Pinewoods

I'd seen
their hoof prints in the deep
needles and knew
they ended the long night

under the pines, walking
like two mute
and beautiful women toward
the deeper woods, so I

got up in the dark and
went there. They came
slowly down the hill
and looked at me sitting under

the blue trees, shyly
they stepped closer and stared
from under their thick lashes and even
nibbled some damp

tassels of weeds. This
is not a poem about a dream,
though it could be.
This is a poem about the world

that is ours, or could be.
one of them - I swear it! -
would have come to my arms.

But the other
stamped sharp hoof in the
pine needles like
the tap of sanity,

and they went off together through
the trees. When I woke
I was alone,
I was thinking:

so this is how you swim inward,
so this is how you flow outward,
so this is how you pray.

Page 32, 'House of Light', Poems by Mary Oliver

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