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Mary Oliver

The Black Snake When the black snake flashed onto the morning road, and the truck could not swerve– death, that is how it happens. Now he lies looped and useless as an old bicycle tire. I stop the car and carry him into the bushes. He is as cool and gleaming as a braided whip,… Continue reading Mary Oliver

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Peter Matthiessen

And only the enlightened can recall their former lives; for the rest of us, the memories of past existences are but glints of light, twinges of longing, passing shadows, disturbingly familiar, that are gone before they can be grasped, like the passage of that silver bird on Dhaulagiri. ― Peter Matthiessen, The Snow Leopard .… Continue reading Peter Matthiessen

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Mary Oliver

When it’s over, it’s over, and we don’t know any of us, what happens then. So I try not to miss anything. I think, in my whole life, I have never missed The full moon or the slipper of its coming back. Or, a kiss. Well, yes, especially a kiss. ― Mary Oliver, “When,” Swan:… Continue reading Mary Oliver

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Emily Dickinson

How many flowers fail in Wood – Or perish from the Hill – Without the privilege to know That they are Beautiful – How many cast a nameless Pod Upon the nearest Breeze – Unconscious of the Scarlet Freight – It bear to other eyes – — Emily Dickinson, from “Fascicle Twenty-Eight, Sheet Three, spring… Continue reading Emily Dickinson

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Emily Dickinson

To wait an Hour – is long – If Love be just beyond – To wait Eternity – is short – If Love reward the end – — Emily Dickinson, from “Fascicle Thirty-Nine, Sheet Four, early 1864,” Emily Dickinson’s Poems As She Preserved Them, ed. Christanne Miller (Belknap, 2016)

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Emily Dickinson

“Hope” is the thing with feathers – That perches in the soul – And sings the tune without the words – And never stops – at all – And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard – And sore must be the storm – That could abash the little Bird That kept so many… Continue reading Emily Dickinson

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American Culture · American Literature · Anthology · Classic · Collection · Compilation · Excerpt · Nature · Passage · Poetry · Romanticism · Transcendentalism

Emily Dickinson

Come slowly, Eden! Lips unused to thee, Bashful, sip thy jasmines, As the fainting bee, Reaching late his flower, Round her chamber hums, Counts his nectars–enters, And is lost in balms! — Emily Dickinson, “Come slowly, Eden,” [211], The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson (Little, Brown & Co.,1960)

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American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Collection · Contemporary · Inspirational · Motivational · Nature · Poetry · Spiritual

Mary Oliver

Something whispered something that was not even a word. It was more like a silence that was understandable. I was standing at the edge of the pond. Nothing living, what we call living, was in sight. And yet, the voice entered me, my body-life, with so much happiness. And there was nothing there but the… Continue reading Mary Oliver

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American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Collection · Contemporary · Inspirational · Motivational · Nature · Poetry

Mary Oliver

Evidence Where do I live? If I had no address, as many people do not, I could nevertheless say that I lived in the same town as the lilies of the field, and the still waters. Spring, and all through the neighborhood now there are strong men tending flowers. Beauty without purpose is beauty without… Continue reading Mary Oliver

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