Friday, February 24, 2006

Listen to a rare Mary Oliver recording

Listen to a rare recording of Mary Oliver, the Pulitzer prize winning poet.

Last November, Mary Oliver give a reading in Seattle. Unlike some poets, Mary Oliver makes few public appearances and I have never seen or heard her give a reading. Also, she has just lost her life partner not long before the reading tour began. For what it's worth, I think you will come away knowing that she's the "real deal" when and about what she writes.

The local public radio station recorded her talk and part of it is now available, if you're interested, at:

The program begins (abruptly) with Mary Oliver reading "The Journey".... reprinted below

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.

~ Mary Oliver ~

(Dream Work)