Wednesday, April 06, 2005

When Death Comes

by Mary Oliver

When death comes like the hungry bear in autumn;
When death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse
To buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
When death comes like the measles-pox;
When death comes like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiousity, wondering;
What is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?
And therefore I look upon everything
As a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
And I look upon time as no more than an idea
And I consider eternity as another possibility,
And I think of each life as a flower, as common
As a field daisy, and as singular

And each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
Tending, as all music does, toward silence,
And each body a lion of courage,
and something precious to the earth.
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
When it's over, I don't want to wonder
If I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened, or full of argument.
I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.


Thank you to all of you who recently posted such lovely stories in my comments and offered such sweet sympathies. Your words are definitely music for my eyes.

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