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Eileen Clemens Granfors

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Member Since: Nov, 2007

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Mary Oliver's When Death Comes shared by
by Eileen Clemens Granfors   
Rated "G" by the Author.
Last edited: Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Posted: Tuesday, January 18, 2011

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A beautiful ode to living life and not fearing death.

When Death Comes

Mary Oliver

From New and Selected Poems by Mary Oliver (Beacon Press, 25 Beacon St, Boston, MA 02108-2892, ISBN 0 870 6819 5).

  When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measles-pox;

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth
tending as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it's over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it is over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.

 

My favorite lines are those that begin "When it's over. . . to the last line, "I don't want to end up simply having visited this world."

Like Mary, I believe each day is a day to be "a bride married to amazement."

 

 


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Reviewed by Patrick Granfors 1/22/2011
I like Mary Oliver too. p
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