The Journey

Some days we need a bit of inspiration, a bit of soul nourishment in the form of quiet simplicity. It can come in many ways, including poetry. So this morning I dusted off a notebook to search through some of my favorite poems. This one by Mary Oliver, titled “The Journey” is just what I need to settle into my day:

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 your 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 the 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 the 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.

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