Thursday, March 27, 2008

You do not have to be good

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 rain
are moving over the landscapes
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese
high in the clear 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.

-Mary Oliver

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