Friday, January 18, 2019

Sleeping in the Forest

Sleeping in the Forest

I thought the earth remembered me,
she took me back so tenderly,
arranging her dark skirts, her pockets
full of lichens and seeds.
I slept as never before, a stone on the river bed,
nothing between me and the white fire of the stars
but my thoughts, and they floated light as moths
among the branches of the perfect trees.
All night I heard the small kingdoms
breathing around me, the insects,
and the birds who do their work in the darkness.
All night I rose and fell, as if in water,
grappling with a luminous doom. By morning
I had vanished at least a dozen times
into something better.

from Sleeping In The Forest
© 1978 by Mary Oliver


  1. Thanks for sharing this rather enigmatic poem Jennifer.

  2. One thing that Mary Oliver's death has given us is that people are sharing their favorites of her poems and it's beautiful. As is this one.

  3. Wow. She blows my mind every time.

  4. How wonderful that many are writing about the loss of Mary Oliver and sharing her poems.

  5. I only just learned of her passing. I am glad to see you too are a fan/posted this poem.

  6. She gave us a lot of deep poems.