Words for Wednesday

Forty Years

~ Mary Oliver

for forty years
the sheets of white paper have
passed under my hands and I have tried
to improve their peaceful

emptiness putting down
little curls little shafts
of letters words
little flames leaping

not one page
was less to me than fascinating
discursive full of cadence
its pale nerves hiding

in the curves of the Qs
behind the soldierly Hs
in the webbed feet of the Ws
forty years

and again this morning as always
I am stopped as the world comes back
wet and beautiful I am thinking
that language

is not even a river
is not a tree is not a green field
is not even a black ant traveling
briskly modestly

from day to day from one
golden page to another.

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One response to “Words for Wednesday

  1. She is the condensed (spare?) Wordsworth of our times.

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