|Photo Credit – Jan Bowman – October 2013
I watched the recent Atlantic storm off Rehoboth, DE while I was writing, and as I watched the sad drama of our governmental madness, I happened to read this particular poem that I share here from Mary Oliver’s collection:
A Thousand Mornings.
“Was It Necessary To Do It?”
I tell you that ant is very alive!
Look at how he fusses at being stepped on.
I love Mary Oliver’s poetry. I read and reread her poems. So if you haven’t read anything by her – go quickly into the world and buy a book of her poetry. Any one will do. All her collections are wonderful. And she is always kind. Your life will be enriched. Her poems draw me closer to my reflective interior world, while deepening my compassionate understanding of the broader world. Her sparsely drawn parallels to our somewhat uncivilized attempts at civilization offer wise metaphors. And references to nature abound. So go for it. Have a juicy morsel of her poetry. It has fewer calories than chocolate.
Or maybe this one from the same collection works better. See what you think.
“The Poet Compares Human Nature To The Ocean From Which We Came”
The sea can do craziness, it can do smooth,
It can lie down like silk breathing
Or toss havoc shoreward; it can give
Gifts or withhold all; it can rise, ebb, froth
Like an incoming frenzy of fountains, or it can
Sweet-talk entirely. As I can too,
And so, no doubt, can you, and you.
So I am going back to work now on my writing project. I wish more poetry in all our lives. We would be better people with it. Here are some of my favorite collections of her work: American Primitive, Dream Work, What Do We Know, and Swan. There are more — so go — explore.
About Jan Bowman
Jan Bowman’s fiction has appeared in numerous publications including, Roanoke Review, Big Muddy, The Broadkill Review, Third Wednesday, Minimus, Buffalo Spree (97), Folio, The Potomac Review, Musings, Potato Eyes and others. Glimmer Train named a recent story as Honorable Mention in the November 2012 Short Story Awards for New Writers. Winner of the 2011 Roanoke Review Fiction Award, her stories have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes, Best American Short Stories, a Pen/O’Henry award and a recent story was a finalist in the 2013 Phoebe Fiction Contest; another was a 2012 finalist in the “So To Speak” Fiction Contest. She is working on two collections of short stories while shopping for a publisher for a completed story collection. She has nonfiction publications in Trajectoryand Pen-in-Hand. She writes a weekly blog of “Reflections” on the writing life and posts regular interviews with writers and publishers. Learn more at www.janbowmanwriter.com or
visit blog: http://janbowmanwriter.blogspot.com