She is the poet Mary Oliver.

Her poetry lifts my soul, her imagery delights my mind, her questions make me ponder. Can someone you’ve never met become a spiritual teacher and mentor? I believe so. Can a stranger speak your thoughts and feelings so poignantly you recognize your own voice in nearly every written line? Yes.

I’m not alone in admiring Ms Oliver’s skill; she is acknowledged to be one of the best and most loved poets in the United States. What we have in common is probably what most of her fans share with her; an appreciative heart and a love of nature. Some of her more recent poems admit a love for Christ, which also puts us on the same page, (ah–to be on the same page as Mary Oliver!) but her love of God has always shone through her work and she has strengthened my faith from the very first poem I read called The Summer Day.

Twenty years behind in almost everything, I first discovered Ms. Oliver by accident a few years ago while browsing through a dusty, old magazine in a medical lab waiting room. I’d made an appointment for a blood test and hadn’t known until I got there that they didn’t take Medicaid. Due to a walking disability, I didn’t have the option to go shopping or look for someplace to eat, I simply had to sit and wait until my disability bus reappeared to pick me up, which would be at least two hours, all the while knowing that I’d have to ask for another day off, locate another lab and do the whole thing all over again.

That day, which should have been a complete washout, turned into a truly memorable one when I read The Summer Day which you can find here: Poetry 180.

If you are new to Mary Oliver’s poetry and wonder about my page title; it comes from the first line of Messenger, the first poem in Thirst. Her poetry’s all over the Internet, just google “Mary Oliver” or the name of a specific poem.


8 Responses to “Her Work Is Loving the World”

  1. ecostav Says:

    hello im the young guy with the earth is alive blog….i didnt work on the blog for a while :)sorry anyway

  2. Barbara--porchsitter Says:

    Hi and thanks for visiting–I’d check out your blog if you’d left a link or addie.

  3. I am not familiar with the writing of Mary Oliver. If her poem, the Messenger, is any indication, she is a poet to come to know.

  4. porchsitter Says:

    She is amazing! Her love of nature is so strong, her spirituality is there in everything she writes and her questions take my breath away. Hope you read some of her books, you will love her.

  5. Thank you for writing about Mary Oliver, I’ll look if I can find out more about her.
    Happy New Year,

    1. Oh, now I know why the name sounded familiär: I clicked on the Poetry 180 link!
      I attended the presentation of the 180 Poems project by Billy Collins at the Library of Congress. Those were the days! 😉

      1. porchsitter Says:

        That must have been a wonderful event! Billy Collins in high on my list–and I still check the 180 site now and then. An online friend and I used the poems to get to know each other better.

      2. Says:

        Thanks for the comment, yes, that’s the Mary Oliver. Billy Collins is a favorite, too. Must have been great to visit the 180 presentation! Vienna is so beautiful–and your blog really showcases it. Thank you for your time and talent!Barbara

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