Sunday, Dec 10, 2017
This is a superb collection of Mary Oliver's poetry. I believe there is a poem for every person in this volume. Interestingly, from Oliver's books I like least (Thirst and Felicity, for example), the chosen poems for this collection are strong and really resonate with me. I plan on reading those collections again, thanks to Devotions. On the flip side, my favorite books by Mary Oliver (Owls and Other Fantasies and Blue Iris) are represented by my least favorite poems. I still found an abundance of magic and beauty in this collection, a staggering amount really, and I feel most pleasantly satiated and inspired after savoring each and every page.
My favorite lines:
From The World I Live In - "only if there are angels in your head will you ever, possibly, see one."
A note before the next line - Percy was one of Mary Oliver's dogs. This is one of my all-time favorite poems by her.
From Percy (Nine) - "and he runs to the door, his wide mouth in its laugh-shape, and waves, since he has one, his tail."
From How I Go to the Woods - "If you have ever gone to the woods with me, I must love you very much."
From Mysteries, Yes - "How people come, from delight or the scars of damage, to the comfort of a poem."
A note before the next line - this is one of my favorite poems to hear Mary Oliver read aloud. Look it up!
From Mornings at Blackwater - "For years, every morning, I drank from Blackwater Pond. It was flavored with oak leaves and also, no doubt, the feet of ducks."
From Praying - "this isn't a contest, but the doorway into thanks"
From At Blackwater Pond (once again, drinking its waters) - It falls cold into my body, waking the bones. I hear them deep inside of me, whispering oh what is that beautiful thing that just happened?"