Messenger – Poem by Mary Oliver


by Mary Oliver

My work is loving the world.

Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird—equal seekers of sweetness.

Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums.

Here the clam deep in the speckled sand.

Are my boots old?  Is my coat torn?

Am I no longer young, and still not half-perfect?  Let me

keep my mind on what matters,

which is my work,

which is mostly standing still and learning to be


The phoebe, the delphinium.

The sheep in the pasture, and the pasture.

Which is mostly rejoicing, since all the ingredients are here,

Which is gratitude, to be given a mind and a heart and these body-clothes,

a mouth with which to give shouts of joy

to the moth and the wren, to the sleepy dug-up clam,

telling them all, over and over, how it is

that we live forever.

About Mare Cromwell

Referred to as “The Voice of Earth Mother” by a gifted Shoshone elder, Mare Cromwell is a multi-award-winning author, Medicine woman/Lightworker and healer. She has also been told by another gifted elder that her work with Earth Mother is in the prophecies. Her books include: "The Great Mother Bible"; "Messages from Mother.... Earth Mother"; and "If I gave you God’s phone number.... Searching for Spirituality in America". She has studied with Native American teachers for twenty-two years and sat on the World Council for Wisdom Gatherings for three years. Mare leads workshops on our Sacred Planet-Earth Mother, Womb Wisdom and Sacred Silliness and more. She is the visionary and producer of the 1000 Goddesses Gathering in Washington DC. Mare loves to be involved in Ceremony. She is also a former worm herder. She calls Western Maryland home.
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6 Responses to Messenger – Poem by Mary Oliver

  1. slpmartin says:

    I love the way you unite the beginning and end of this poem.

  2. Hi, You are very kind but Mary Oliver wrote the poem, not I. She’s brilliant… I have several of her poems on my blog. Perhaps you’ll enjoy reading some of the others too.
    – mare

  3. Pingback: THIRST by Mary Oliver — Lifescape Magazine

  4. says:

    I use to know a Mary Lyon Oliver at the Chelmer Institue Brentwood 1977-80 this is not she is it ? Do you know ? She was an art student

  5. Hi,

    I received your comment on my blog about Mary Oliver. I honestly don’t know Mary Oliver’s hometown but if you google her more, surely there is some information somewhere on her hometown. She’s considered one of the most accomplished American poets at this time though. A very gifted woman.

    Good luck with your search,

  6. Pingback: » A Writer’s Creed

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