The Journey By Mary Oliver


The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice --
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do --
determined to save
the only life you could save.

  ~ Mary Oliver ~        



This is a wonderful poem to read aloud to yourself or to a friend!

swanfether swanfether
70+, F
8 Responses Jul 20, 2008

Wow! Beautiful poem. Thank you for sharing. ^^

Thanks again Swanfether, for another great gift.

amazing poem, never heard of this one before. Thanks for sharing such beautiful writings :)

Wonderful, wonderful, swanfether. Thank you for sharing that :D

So glad to share Mary Oliver's wonderful way with words. Its amazing to me how this poem reaches so many, even when the details of our experience are so different...there must be threads of something that we all have in common... anyway, I'm grateful that you were each moved by her poem. (:>

Ah, just what I needed today. That was beautiful.

Wonderful poem.. perfect for we travellers who are on our journey thru life's twists and turns.. sometimes the road becomes difficult to navigate, and the voices of others try to distract us and pull us in various directions, but if we stop and listen to that inner voice.. our intuition.. it will guide us through the darkest storms and keep us on the path meant for us.

That was lovely, thank you for sharing.<br />
<br />