Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting-
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

by Mary Oliver

Comments (3)

Language has a power to change and alter states of being, even a remark that sounds like a throw away quip, can have a power of lightning if taken the wrong way. Another fabulous observation from one of the greatest poets of the medium.
this sounds like a riddle...I fail to make it out...but Emily, your poems are always magical- 10
.......very observant and a wonderful write..