Title Image - Quotes by Author Mary Oliver

Quotes by Mary Oliver (Page 2 of 2)

Quote: Come with me into the woods where spring is advancing, as it does, no matter what, not being singular or particular, but one of the forever gifts, and certainly visible. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Come with me into the woods where spring is advancing, as it does, no matter what, not being singular or particular, but one of the forever gifts, and certainly visible.


Quote: Why should I not sit, every morning of my life, on the hillside, looking into the shining world? by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Why should I not sit, every morning of my life, on the hillside, looking into the shining world?


Quote: I tell you this to break your heart, by which I mean only that it break open and never close again to the rest of the world. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I tell you this to break your heart, by which I mean only that it break open and never close again to the rest of the world.


Quote: For poems are not words, after all, but fires for the cold, ropes let down to the lost, something as necessary as bread in the pockets of the hungry. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

For poems are not words, after all, but fires for the cold, ropes let down to the lost, something as necessary as bread in the pockets of the hungry.


Quote: Praying It doesn't have to be the blue iris, it could be weeds in a vacant lot, or a few small stones; just pay attention, then patch a few words together and don't try to make them elaborate, this isn't a contest but the doorway into thanks, and a silence in which another voice may speak. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of Mary Oliver quote: Praying It doesn't have to be the blue iris, it could be weeds in a vacant lot, or a few small stones; just pay attention, then patch a few words together and don't try to make them elaborate, this isn't a contest but the doorway into thanks, and a silence in which another voice may speak.- black text on quotes background

Praying It doesn't have to be the blue iris, it could be weeds in a vacant lot, or a few small stones; just pay attention, then patch a few words together and don't try to make them elaborate, this isn't a contest but the doorway into thanks, and a silence in which another voice may speak.


Quote: One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began.


Quote: Ten times a day something happens to me like this -- some strengthening throb of amazement -- some good sweet empathic ping and swell. This is the first, the wildest and the wisest thing I know: that the soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Ten times a day something happens to me like this -- some strengthening throb of amazement -- some good sweet empathic ping and swell. This is the first, the wildest and the wisest thing I know: that the soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness.


Quote: If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don't hesitate. Give in to it. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don't hesitate. Give in to it.


Quote: It is the nature of stone to be satisfied. It is the nature of water to want to be somewhere else. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

It is the nature of stone to be satisfied. It is the nature of water to want to be somewhere else.


Quote: Said the river: imagine everything you can imagine, then keep on going. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Said the river: imagine everything you can imagine, then keep on going.


Quote: I got saved by poetry and I got saved by the beauty of the world. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I got saved by poetry and I got saved by the beauty of the world.


Quote: My work is loving the world. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

My work is loving the world.


Quote: All eternity is in the moment. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

All eternity is in the moment.


Quote: I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I believe in kindness. Also in mischief.


Quote: I want to think again of dangerous and noble things. I want to be light and frolicsome. I want to be improbable and beautiful and afraid of nothing as though I had wings. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I want to think again of dangerous and noble things. I want to be light and frolicsome. I want to be improbable and beautiful and afraid of nothing as though I had wings.


Quote: We shake with joy, we shake with grief. What a time they have, these two housed as they are in the same body. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

We shake with joy, we shake with grief. What a time they have, these two housed as they are in the same body.


Quote: And I say to my heart: rave on. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

And I say to my heart: rave on.


Quote: Instructions for living a life. Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Instructions for living a life. Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it.


Quote: Things take the time they take. Don't worry. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Things take the time they take. Don't worry.


Quote: 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. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

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.


Quote: One learns by thinking about writing, and by talking
about writing-but primarily through writing. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

One learns by thinking about writing, and by talking
about writing-but primarily through writing.




Quote: It's more than bones.
It's more than the delicate wrist with its personal pulse.
It's more than the beating of the single heart.
It's praising.
It's giving until the giving feels like receiving.
You have a life -- just imagine that!
You have this day, and maybe another, and maybe still another. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of Mary Oliver quote: It's more than bones.
It's more than the delicate wrist with its personal pulse.
It's more than the beating of the single heart.
It's praising.
It's giving until the giving feels like receiving.
You have a life -- just imagine that!
You have this day, and maybe another, and maybe still another.- black text on quotes background

It's more than bones.
It's more than the delicate wrist with its personal pulse.
It's more than the beating of the single heart.
It's praising.
It's giving until the giving feels like receiving.
You have a life -- just imagine that!
You have this day, and maybe another, and maybe still another.


Quote: But, to write well it is entirely necessary to read widely and deeply. Good poems are the best teachers. Perhaps they are the only teachers. I would go so far as to say that, if one must make a choice between reading or taking part in a workshop, one should read. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

But, to write well it is entirely necessary to read widely and deeply. Good poems are the best teachers. Perhaps they are the only teachers. I would go so far as to say that, if one must make a choice between reading or taking part in a workshop, one should read.


Quote: Language is rich, and malleable. It is a living, vibrant material, and every part of a poem works in conjunction with every other part -- the content, the place, the diction, the rhythm, the tone-as well as the very sliding, floating, thumping, rapping sounds of it. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of Mary Oliver quote; white text on black background

Language is rich, and malleable. It is a living, vibrant material, and every part of a poem works in conjunction with every other part -- the content, the place, the diction, the rhythm, the tone-as well as the very sliding, floating, thumping, rapping sounds of it.


Quote: A carpenter is hired- a roof repaired, a porch built. Everything that can be fixed. June, July, August. Everyday we hear their laughter. I think of the painting by van Gogh, the man in the chair. Everything wrong, and nowhere to go. His hands over his eyes. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

A carpenter is hired- a roof repaired, a porch built. Everything that can be fixed. June, July, August. Everyday we hear their laughter. I think of the painting by van Gogh, the man in the chair. Everything wrong, and nowhere to go. His hands over his eyes.


Quote: I am a performing artist; I perfomr admiration.
'Come with me', I want my poems to say. 'And do the same. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I am a performing artist; I perfomr admiration.
'Come with me', I want my poems to say. 'And do the same.


Quote: I am a performing artist; I perform admiration.
'Come with me', I want my poems to say. 'And do the same. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I am a performing artist; I perform admiration.
'Come with me', I want my poems to say. 'And do the same.


Quote: Of course! the path to heaven
doesn't lie down in flat miles.
It's in the imagination
with which you perceive 
this world,
and the gestures
with which you honor it.
-from The Swan. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Of course! the path to heaven
doesn't lie down in flat miles.
It's in the imagination
with which you perceive
this world,
and the gestures
with which you honor it.
-from The Swan.




Quote: And then I feel the sun itself
as it blazes over the hills,
like a million flowers on fire -- 
clearly I'm not needed,
yet I feel myself turning
into something of inexplicable value.
-from The Buddha's Last Instruction. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

And then I feel the sun itself
as it blazes over the hills,
like a million flowers on fire --
clearly I'm not needed,
yet I feel myself turning
into something of inexplicable value.
-from The Buddha's Last Instruction.


Quote: It's not a competition, it's a doorway. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

It's not a competition, it's a doorway.


Quote: How heron comes

It is a negligence of the mind
not to notice how at dusk
heron comes to the pond and
stands there in his death robes, perfect
servant of the system, hungry, his eyes
full of attention, his wings
pure light. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

How heron comes

It is a negligence of the mind
not to notice how at dusk
heron comes to the pond and
stands there in his death robes, perfect
servant of the system, hungry, his eyes
full of attention, his wings
pure light.


Quote: After a cruel childhood, one must reinvent oneself. Then reimagine the world. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

After a cruel childhood, one must reinvent oneself. Then reimagine the world.


Quote: Maybe the world, without us, is the real poem. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Maybe the world, without us, is the real poem.


Quote: And now you'll be telling stories
of my coming back
and they won't be false, and they won't be true
but they'll be real. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

And now you'll be telling stories
of my coming back
and they won't be false, and they won't be true
but they'll be real.


Quote: You can have the other words-chance, luck, coincidence, serendipity. I'll take grace. I don't know what it is exactly, but I'll take it. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

You can have the other words-chance, luck, coincidence, serendipity. I'll take grace. I don't know what it is exactly, but I'll take it.




Quote: This is the first, wildest, and wisest thing I know, that the soul exists, and that it is built entirely out of attention. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

This is the first, wildest, and wisest thing I know, that the soul exists, and that it is built entirely out of attention.


Quote: I went to India and was quite taken with it. There's a feeling there that things are holy first and useful second. And in America, we have it backwards. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I went to India and was quite taken with it. There's a feeling there that things are holy first and useful second. And in America, we have it backwards.


Quote: Attention is the beginning of devotion. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Attention is the beginning of devotion.


Quote: What can we do about God, who makes and then breaks every god-forsaken, beautiful day? by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

What can we do about God, who makes and then breaks every god-forsaken, beautiful day?


Quote: When When it's over, it's over, and we don't know any of us, what happens then. So I try not to miss anything. I think, in my whole life, I have never missed The full moon or the slipper of its coming back. Or, a kiss. Well, yes, especially a kiss. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

When When it's over, it's over, and we don't know any of us, what happens then. So I try not to miss anything. I think, in my whole life, I have never missed The full moon or the slipper of its coming back. Or, a kiss. Well, yes, especially a kiss.


Quote: Hello, sun in my face. Hello you who made the morning and spread it over the fields...Watch, now, how I start the day in happiness, in kindness. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Hello, sun in my face. Hello you who made the morning and spread it over the fields...Watch, now, how I start the day in happiness, in kindness.


Quote: You must not ever stop being whimsical. And you must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

You must not ever stop being whimsical. And you must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life.


Quote: Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable.


Quote: I Go Down To The Shore

I go down to the shore in the morning
and depending on the hour the waves
are rolling in or moving out,
and I say, oh, I am miserable,
what shall--
what should I do? And the sea says
in its lovely voice:
Excuse me, I have work to do. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I Go Down To The Shore

I go down to the shore in the morning
and depending on the hour the waves
are rolling in or moving out,
and I say, oh, I am miserable,
what shall--
what should I do? And the sea says
in its lovely voice:
Excuse me, I have work to do.


Quote: Listen -- are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life? by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Listen -- are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?


Quote: The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time.


Quote: The Uses Of Sorrow

(In my sleep I dreamed this poem)

Someone I loved once gave me
a box full of darkness.

It took me years to understand
that this, too, was a gift. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

The Uses Of Sorrow

(In my sleep I dreamed this poem)

Someone I loved once gave me
a box full of darkness.

It took me years to understand
that this, too, was a gift.


Quote: Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination.


Quote: Listen, the heart-shackles are not, as you think, death, illness, pain, unrequited hope, not loneliness, but lassitude, rue, vainglory, fear, anxiety, selfishness. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Listen, the heart-shackles are not, as you think, death, illness, pain, unrequited hope, not loneliness, but lassitude, rue, vainglory, fear, anxiety, selfishness.


Quote: The Old Poets Of China

Wherever I am, the world comes after me.
It offers me its busyness. It does not believe
that I do not want it. Now I understand
why the old poets of China went so far and high
into the mountains, then crept into the pale mist. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

The Old Poets Of China

Wherever I am, the world comes after me.
It offers me its busyness. It does not believe
that I do not want it. Now I understand
why the old poets of China went so far and high
into the mountains, then crept into the pale mist.






Quote: Come with me into the woods where spring is
advancing, as it does, no matter what,
not being singular or particular, but one
of the forever gifts, and certainly visible. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Come with me into the woods where spring is
advancing, as it does, no matter what,
not being singular or particular, but one
of the forever gifts, and certainly visible.


Quote: I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. Also in singing, especially when singing is not necessarily prescribed. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. Also in singing, especially when singing is not necessarily prescribed.


Quote: I know the sag of the unfinished poem. And I know the release of the poem that is finished. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I know the sag of the unfinished poem. And I know the release of the poem that is finished.


Quote: It is a serious thing -- just to be alive -- on this fresh morning -- in this broken world. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

It is a serious thing -- just to be alive -- on this fresh morning -- in this broken world.


Quote: Love yourself. Then forget it. Then, love the world. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Love yourself. Then forget it. Then, love the world.


Quote: Because of the dog's joyfulness, our own is increased. It is no small gift. It is not the least reason why we should honor as love the dog of our own life, and the dog down the street, and all the dogs not yet born. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Because of the dog's joyfulness, our own is increased. It is no small gift. It is not the least reason why we should honor as love the dog of our own life, and the dog down the street, and all the dogs not yet born.


Quote: Words have not only a definition... but also the felt quality of their own kind of sound. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Words have not only a definition... but also the felt quality of their own kind of sound.


Quote: Poetry is one of the ancient arts, and it began as did all the fine arts, within the original wilderness of the earth. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Poetry is one of the ancient arts, and it began as did all the fine arts, within the original wilderness of the earth.


Quote: Instead of taking the reader by the hand and running him down the hill, I want to lead him into a house of many rooms, and leave him alone in each of them. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Instead of taking the reader by the hand and running him down the hill, I want to lead him into a house of many rooms, and leave him alone in each of them.


Quote: I would rather write poems than prose, any day, any place. Yet each has its own force. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I would rather write poems than prose, any day, any place. Yet each has its own force.


Quote: I grew up in a confused house: too much unwanted attention or none at all. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I grew up in a confused house: too much unwanted attention or none at all.


Quote: Wasn't it Emerson who said, 'My life is for itself and not for a spectacle'? I have a happy, full, good life because I hold it private. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Wasn't it Emerson who said, 'My life is for itself and not for a spectacle'? I have a happy, full, good life because I hold it private.


Quote: Writers must... take care of the sensibility that houses the possibility of poems. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Writers must... take care of the sensibility that houses the possibility of poems.


Quote: Sometimes breaking the rules is extending the rules. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Sometimes breaking the rules is extending the rules.


Quote: I always feel that whatever isn't necessary shouldn't be in a poem. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I always feel that whatever isn't necessary shouldn't be in a poem.


Quote: I have the feeling that a lot of poets writing now are -- they sort of tap dance through it. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I have the feeling that a lot of poets writing now are -- they sort of tap dance through it.


Quote: I had a very dysfunctional family, and a very hard childhood. So I made a world out of words. And it was my salvation. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I had a very dysfunctional family, and a very hard childhood. So I made a world out of words. And it was my salvation.


Quote: Apparently, I've been considered a recluse. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Apparently, I've been considered a recluse.


Quote: I've always wanted to write poems and nothing else. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I've always wanted to write poems and nothing else.


Quote: My parents didn't care very much what I did, and that was probably a blessing. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

My parents didn't care very much what I did, and that was probably a blessing.


Quote: It's very important to write things down instantly, or you can lose the way you were thinking out a line. I have a rule that if I wake up at 3 in the morning and think of something, I write it down. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

It's very important to write things down instantly, or you can lose the way you were thinking out a line. I have a rule that if I wake up at 3 in the morning and think of something, I write it down.


Quote: I have a notebook with me all the time, and I begin scribbling a few words. When things are going well, the walk does not get anywhere; I finally just stop and write. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I have a notebook with me all the time, and I begin scribbling a few words. When things are going well, the walk does not get anywhere; I finally just stop and write.


Quote: I worked probably 25 years by myself, just writing and working, not trying to publish much, not giving readings. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I worked probably 25 years by myself, just writing and working, not trying to publish much, not giving readings.


Quote: People want poetry. They need poetry. They get it. They don't want fancy work. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

People want poetry. They need poetry. They get it. They don't want fancy work.


Quote: I decided very early that I wanted to write. But I didn't think of it as a career. I didn't even think of it as a profession... It was the most exciting thing, the most powerful thing, the most wonderful thing to do with my life. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I decided very early that I wanted to write. But I didn't think of it as a career. I didn't even think of it as a profession... It was the most exciting thing, the most powerful thing, the most wonderful thing to do with my life.


Quote: One thing I do know is that poetry, to be understood, must be clear. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

One thing I do know is that poetry, to be understood, must be clear.


Quote: We all have a hungry heart, and one of the things we hunger for is happiness. So as much as I possibly could, I stayed where I was happy. I spent a great deal of time in my younger years just writing and reading, walking around the woods in Ohio, where I grew up. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

We all have a hungry heart, and one of the things we hunger for is happiness. So as much as I possibly could, I stayed where I was happy. I spent a great deal of time in my younger years just writing and reading, walking around the woods in Ohio, where I grew up.


Quote: Poetry isn't a profession, it's a way of life. It's an empty basket; you put your life into it and make something out of that. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Poetry isn't a profession, it's a way of life. It's an empty basket; you put your life into it and make something out of that.


Quote: As a child, what captivated me was reading the poems myself and realizing that there was a world without material substance which was nevertheless as alive as any other. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

As a child, what captivated me was reading the poems myself and realizing that there was a world without material substance which was nevertheless as alive as any other.


Quote: My first two books are out of print and, okay, they can sleep there comfortably. It's early work, derivative work. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

My first two books are out of print and, okay, they can sleep there comfortably. It's early work, derivative work.


Quote: To find a new word that is accurate and different, you have to be alert for it. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

To find a new word that is accurate and different, you have to be alert for it.


Quote: I was very careful never to take an interesting job. If you have an interesting job, you get interested in it. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I was very careful never to take an interesting job. If you have an interesting job, you get interested in it.


Quote: The woods that I loved as a child are entirely gone. The woods that I loved as a young adult are gone. The woods that most recently I walked in are not gone, but they're full of bicycle trails. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

The woods that I loved as a child are entirely gone. The woods that I loved as a young adult are gone. The woods that most recently I walked in are not gone, but they're full of bicycle trails.


Quote: I very much wished not to be noticed, and to be left alone, and I sort of succeeded. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I very much wished not to be noticed, and to be left alone, and I sort of succeeded.


Quote: Writers sometimes give up what is most strange and wonderful about their writing -- soften their roughest edges -- to accommodate themselves toward a group response. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Writers sometimes give up what is most strange and wonderful about their writing -- soften their roughest edges -- to accommodate themselves toward a group response.


Quote: I'm going to die one day. I know it's coming for me, too. I'll be a mountain, I'll be a stone on the beach. I'll be nourishment. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I'm going to die one day. I know it's coming for me, too. I'll be a mountain, I'll be a stone on the beach. I'll be nourishment.


Quote: If I've done my work well, I vanish completely from the scene. I believe it is invasive of the work when you know too much about the writer. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

If I've done my work well, I vanish completely from the scene. I believe it is invasive of the work when you know too much about the writer.


Quote: Almost anything is too much. I am trying in my poems to have the reader be the experiencer. I do not want to be there. It is not even a walk we take together. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Almost anything is too much. I am trying in my poems to have the reader be the experiencer. I do not want to be there. It is not even a walk we take together.


Quote: Walks work for me. I enter some arena that is neither conscious or unconscious. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Walks work for me. I enter some arena that is neither conscious or unconscious.


Quote: I think one thing is that prayer has become more useful, interesting, fruitful, and... almost involuntary in my life. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I think one thing is that prayer has become more useful, interesting, fruitful, and... almost involuntary in my life.


Quote: To live in this world, you must be able to do three things: to love what is mortal; to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it; and, when the time comes to let it go, to let it go. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

To live in this world, you must be able to do three things: to love what is mortal; to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it; and, when the time comes to let it go, to let it go.


Quote: You can fool a lot of yourself but you can't fool the soul. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

You can fool a lot of yourself but you can't fool the soul.


Quote: It's very important to write things down instantly, or you can lose the way you were thinking out a line. I have a rule that if I wake up at 3 in the morning and think of something, I write it down. I can't wait until morning -- it'll be gone. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

It's very important to write things down instantly, or you can lose the way you were thinking out a line. I have a rule that if I wake up at 3 in the morning and think of something, I write it down. I can't wait until morning -- it'll be gone.


Quote: In college, you learn how to learn. Four years is not too much time to spend at that. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

In college, you learn how to learn. Four years is not too much time to spend at that.


Quote: To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.


Quote: I simply do not distinguish between work and play. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I simply do not distinguish between work and play.


Quote: When it's over, I want to say: all my life I was a bride married to amazement. I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

When it's over, I want to say: all my life I was a bride married to amazement. I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.


Quote: I'd rather write about polar bears than people. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I'd rather write about polar bears than people.


Quote: I worked privately, and sometimes I feel that might be better for poets than the kind of social workshop gathering. My school was the great poets: I read, and I read, and I read. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I worked privately, and sometimes I feel that might be better for poets than the kind of social workshop gathering. My school was the great poets: I read, and I read, and I read.


Quote: We all have a hungry heart, and one of the things we hunger for is happiness. So as much as I possibly could, I stayed where I was happy. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

We all have a hungry heart, and one of the things we hunger for is happiness. So as much as I possibly could, I stayed where I was happy.


Quote: I consider myself kind of a reporter -- one who uses words that are more like music and that have a choreography. I never think of myself as a poet; I just get up and write. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I consider myself kind of a reporter -- one who uses words that are more like music and that have a choreography. I never think of myself as a poet; I just get up and write.


Quote: So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray.


Quote: Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?


Quote: I love the line of Flaubert about observing things very intensely. I think our duty as writers begins not with our own feelings, but with the powers of observing. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I love the line of Flaubert about observing things very intensely. I think our duty as writers begins not with our own feelings, but with the powers of observing.


Quote: I have a notion that if you are going to be spiritually curious, you better not get cluttered up with too many material things. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

I have a notion that if you are going to be spiritually curious, you better not get cluttered up with too many material things.


Quote: There were times over the years when life was not easy, but if you're working a few hours a day and you've got a good book to read, and you can go outside to the beach and dig for clams, you're okay. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

There were times over the years when life was not easy, but if you're working a few hours a day and you've got a good book to read, and you can go outside to the beach and dig for clams, you're okay.


Quote: There is nothing better than work. Work is also play; children know that. Children play earnestly as if it were work. But people grow up, and they work with a sorrow upon them. It's duty. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

There is nothing better than work. Work is also play; children know that. Children play earnestly as if it were work. But people grow up, and they work with a sorrow upon them. It's duty.


Quote: My work is the world. Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird - equal seekers of sweetness. Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

My work is the world. Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird - equal seekers of sweetness. Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums.


Quote: To tell you the truth, I believe everything - tigers, trees, stones - are sentient in one way or another. You'd never catch me idly kicking a stone, for example. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

To tell you the truth, I believe everything - tigers, trees, stones - are sentient in one way or another. You'd never catch me idly kicking a stone, for example.


Quote: There are a hundred paths through the world that are easier than loving. But who wants easier? by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

There are a hundred paths through the world that are easier than loving. But who wants easier?


Quote: When I am alone I can become invisible. I can sit on the top of a dune as motionless as an uprise of weeds, until the foxes run by unconcerned. I can hear the almost unhearable sound of the roses singing. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

When I am alone I can become invisible. I can sit on the top of a dune as motionless as an uprise of weeds, until the foxes run by unconcerned. I can hear the almost unhearable sound of the roses singing.


Quote: Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift. by author Mary Oliver overlaid on photo of photo of author Mary Oliver with quote

Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this too, was a gift.


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