stanza by stanza

In Community, Conversation, Inspiration, Nature

Recently my son was given a homework assignment to memorize a poem of his choosing.  Knowing that I love poetry, he came to me for suggestions and I seized the moment to share with him a poet I hold very dear —- I think many of you do too —- Mary Oliver.  We thumbed through several volumes of her work and he settled on When I Am Among the Trees.  And so the last few weeks he has worked his way, stanza by stanza, through this glorious gift of a poem.   I thought I would share it here so that you too might linger over her invitation to pause, to notice the natural world around you, and to embrace gratitude.    _z6a2505-2When I am among the trees, especially the willows and the honey locusts, equally the beech, the oaks and the pines, they give off such hints of gladness. I would almost say they save me, and daily._z6a2426-2I am so distant from the hope of myself, in which I have goodness, and discernment, and never hurry through the world but walk slowly, and bow often._z6a2438-2Around me the trees stir in their leaves and call out, “Stay awhile.”  The light flows from their branches._z6a2478-2And they call again, “It’s simple,” they say, “and you too have come into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled with light, and to shine.”  ~~~ Mary Oliver_z6a2224-2And one final gift from me to you.  A rare interview of Mary Oliver here on the On Being podcast.  Perhaps you might enjoy listening to it as you walk among the trees.

xxoo Deb


  1. i love this so much… and thanks to that podcast can hear her voice reading this poem. beautiful, deb.

    • Thank you Beth. I am so happy to share a podcast with you — the woman who is such a treasured resource for me when it comes to books and podcasts. I hope you enjoy it. xoxo

  2. oh, Mary Oliver. I listened to that podcast this past summer. wonderful.
    and this post, your photos, your son…wonderful too.

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