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Blue Horses: Poems

Mary Oliver

Top 10 Best Quotes

“Maybe the desire to make something beautiful is the piece of God that is inside each of us.”

“LONELINESS I too have known loneliness. I too have known what it is to feel misunderstood, rejected, and suddenly not at all beautiful. Oh, mother earth, your comfort is great, your arms never withhold. It has saved my life to know this. Your rivers flowing, your roses opening in the morning. Oh, motions of tenderness!”

“FIRST YOGA LESSON “Be a lotus in the pond,” she said, “opening slowly, no single energy tugging against another but peacefully, all together.” I couldn’t even touch my toes. “Feel your quadriceps stretching?” she asked. Well, something was certainly stretching. Standing impressively upright, she raised one leg and placed it against the other, then lifted her arms and shook her hands like leaves. “Be a tree,” she said. I lay on the floor, exhausted. But to be a lotus in the pond opening slowly, and very slowly rising— that I could do.”

“ANGELS You might see an angel anytime and anywhere. Of course you have to open your eyes to a kind of second level, but it’s not really hard. The whole business of what’s reality and what isn’t has never been solved and probably never will be. So I don’t care to be too definite about anything. I have a lot of edges called Perhaps and almost nothing you can call Certainty. For myself, but not for other people. That’s a place you just can’t get into, not entirely anyway, other people’s heads. I’ll just leave you with this. I don’t care how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. It’s enough to know that for some people they exist, and that they dance.”

“SUCH SILENCE As deep as I ever went into the forest I came upon an old stone bench, very, very old, and around it a clearing, and beyond that trees taller and older than I had ever seen. Such silence! It really wasn’t so far from a town, but it seemed all the clocks in the world had stopped counting. So it was hard to suppose the usual rules applied. Sometimes there’s only a hint, a possibility. What’s magical, sometimes, has deeper roots than reason. I hope everyone knows that. I sat on the bench, waiting for something. An angel, perhaps. Or dancers with the legs of goats. No, I didn’t see either. But only, I think, because I didn’t stay long enough.”

“The multiplicity of forms! The hummingbird, the fox, the raven, the sparrow hawk, the otter, the dragonfly, the water lily! And on and on. It must be a great disappointment to God if we are not dazzled at least ten times a day.”

“The question is, what will it be like after the last day? Will I float into the sky or will I fray within the earth or a river— remembering nothing? How desperate I would be if I couldn’t remember the sun rising, if I couldn’t remember trees, rivers; if I couldn’t even remember, beloved, your beloved name.”

“What’s magical, sometimes, has deeper roots than reason. I hope everyone knows that.”

“ON MEDITATING, SORT OF Meditation, so I’ve heard, is best accomplished if you entertain a certain strict posture. Frankly, I prefer just to lounge under a tree. So why should I think I could ever be successful? Some days I fall asleep, or land in that even better place—half-asleep—where the world, spring, summer, autumn, winter— flies through my mind in its hardy ascent and its uncompromising descent. So I just lie like that, while distance and time reveal their true attitudes: they never heard of me, and never will, or ever need to. Of course I wake up finally thinking, how wonderful to be who I am, made out of earth and water, my own thoughts, my own fingerprints— all that glorious, temporary stuff.”

“I have a lot of edges called Perhaps and almost nothing you can call Certainty.”

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