Poet Jane Hirshfield said "... the feeling I have about poem-writing (is) that it is always an exploration, of discovering something I didn't already know.  Who I am shifts from moment to moment, year to year.  What I can perceive does as well.  A new poem peers into mystery, into whatever lies just beyond the edge of knowable ground."

I bring a different poem to the writing classes each week, not only to inspire but to introduce new poets to the group members.

What the Body Says by Mary Oliver

I was born here, and
I belong here, and
I will never leave.
The blue heron's

gray smoke will flow over me
for years
and the wind will decide
all directions

until I am safely and entirely
something else.
I am thinking this
this winter morning

as I sit by the fire
and the fire in its red rack
keeps singing
its crackling song

of transformation
Of course
I wonder about
the mystery

that is surely up there
in starry space
and how some part of me
will go there at last.

But I am talking now
of the way the body speaks,
and the wind, that keeps saying,
firmly, lovingly:

a little while and then this body
will be stone; then
it will be water; then
it will be air.

~ from New and Selected Poems, Volume Two (Beacon Press, 2005)


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