Poetry Friday: Mary Oliver’s “Spring”

Posted on February 9, 2007. Filed under: Poetry Fridays |

“Spring” from House of Light

by Mary Oliver

Somewhere
a black bear
has just risen from sleep
and is racing

down the mountain.
All night
in the brisk and shallow restlessness
of early spring

I think of her
her four black fists
flicking the gravel
her tongue

like a red fire
touching the grass,
the cold water.
There is only one question:

how to love this world.
I think of her
rising
like a black and leafy ledge

to sharpen her claws against
the silence
of the trees.
Whatever else

my life is
with its poems
and its music
and its glass cities,

it is also this dazzling darkness
coming
down the mountain
breathing and tasting;

all day I think of her–
her white teeth,
her wordlessness,
her perfect love.

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