“The Journey”

The Journey

One day you finally knew

what you had to do, and began,

though the voices around you

kept shouting

their bad advice–

though the whole house

began to tremble

and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.

“Mend my life!”

each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,

though the wind pried

with its stiff fingers

at the very foundations,

though their melancholy

was terrible.

It was already late

enough, and a wild night,

and the road full of fallen

branches and stones.

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do–

determined to save

the only life you could save.

 – A Poem by Mary Oliver

I ripped this poem out of a magazine a long time ago, put it in a file to save for later, and forgot about it.

I found it again recently when reading a blog about personality types and the poetry that describes each type.

This poem felt familiar as I read it.   Days later, sorting through an old box of papers and bills, I found it.   The copy I had ripped from the magazine.   The same poem.

This poem is enough for me right now when I don’t have my own words to describe how I feel.   It explains exactly where I am, and where I have been.   I am glad there are poets in the world to express it with words I can’t find lately.



2 responses to ““The Journey”

  1. …and I’m glad there are writers who pass their words and their favorite poems along to others!

    Thanks – it’s great to hear from you!


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