(Silent) Poetry Reading 2011

Don’t Hesitate
Mary Oliver
If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy,
don’t hesitate. Give in to it. There are plenty
of lives and whole towns destroyed or about
to be. We are not wise, and not very often
kind. And much can never be redeemed.
Still, life has some possibility left. Perhaps this
is its way of fighting back, that sometimes
something happens better than all the riches
or power in the world. It could be anything,
but very likely you notice it in the instant
when love begins. Anyway, that’s often the
case. Anyway, whatever it is, don’t be afraid
of its plenty. Joy is not made to be a crumb.

This poem is in the collection Swan (Beacon Press, 2010). With thanks, as always, to Reya and with a nod to the 6th Annual Brigid Poetry Festival.

5 thoughts on “(Silent) Poetry Reading 2011

  1. Bearing Water for Brigid Sketches for a water vessel –bottle and message elide on waves.Voice of Brigid calls. All who hear: Imagine.Exposed to wind, to grit, to rainand hail,rock faces erode. VesselDesignated fixed spaceSacrosanct container Conveyor through fluidseparatesFluidityCreates place, surface to paint.Amusement;diffusement of emotion,beatitude, foment of dueling farce. Harsh edges polished,pure colorsblend in the dark.Brief infusion of giddy illusionglows just enough to guilefully entice.Sparkling Neural net smiles,a secretclue revealingpurpose, meaning,engageswild eternal child,ages' flamboyant fool,GloriousMuse (Voice rains from within) A wound is a sacred vessel.Pain carves into fleshsense memory;carries the seedof its own demise.Sentienceengulfed in lifelearns anew to be whole. Wounded with the potential for wisdomwhen eyes are are pried from seeping, sucking, sufferingaching to censure what future we admire.Redefine the schizm.This wound is our project.To heal, discover the vision;realign the seam to fit self-framed landscape. Let loose that genie of desire.Ride rushing blood streams. Build a roaring pyre of grief,insane belief in wrathfilled deities.Revile that old refrain: "life is pain" or a gameto be lost.No Faustian bargain.Just a rambling adventuredaringto exploreessence of ecstasy.Don't wait for the rest to seeand demur.Stretch your sail.Take sight of your guiding star.The only failure is self-denialin favor of the vile liethat pain is destinyinstead of faithful friendlending energyfor change. Slice vivid memories. Exult in the tastes, the textures.Enliven your way. In the endthe vessel breaks.There the Goddess stirs 2011 Aquarius


  2. sending you a comfort ((hug)) of understanding today – just because sometimes its the weekends that are hardest after losing a beloved companion.


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