"Night walks through our days and no one notices.
We like to think of the intricate beauty of a swallow’s flight,
but it is only a desperate, open mouthed search for insects.
There are three truths you have taught me here: that
our shadows will desert us for other, better objects;
that Time steps away from the clock like the song of a blind bird;
and that our maps are the empty husks of desire."
Richard Jackson, from “Filling in the Graves at a Cherokee Site,” in The New Bread Loaf Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry, ed. by Michael Collier and Stanley Plumly (Middlebury College Press, 1999)
"As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame;
As tumbled over rim in roundy wells
Stones ring; like each tucked string tells, each hung bell’s
Bow swung finds tongue to fling out broad its name;
Each mortal thing does one thing and the same:
Deals out that being indoors each one dwells;
Selves — goes itself; myself it speaks and spells,
Crying Whát I dó is me: for that I came."

Gerard Manley Hopkins (28 July 1844 – 8 June 1889)


(via jamreilly)

Our coffee cups. And birds. And the green trees

with blue shadows. And the sun leaping from

one wall to another like a gazelle…

and the water in clouds with endless shapes

in what is left to us of sky,

and other things of postponed memory

indicate this morning is strong and beautiful,

and that we are eternity’s guests

—Mahmoud Darwish, from “A State of Siege” (tr. by Fady Joudah), in The Butterfly’s Burden. Copper Canyon Press, 2006

(via metaphorformetaphor:)

There’s actually an odd correlation between these ideas: poetry is either inadequate, even immoral, in the face of human suffering, or it’s unprofitable, hence useless. Either way, poets are advised to hang our heads or fold our tents. Yet in fact, throughout the world, transfusions of poetic language can and do quite literally keep bodies and souls together—and more. 

from A Human Eye by Adrienne Rich

(via emptythreats:)


Next time what I’d do is look at
the earth before saying anything. I’d stop
just before going into a house
and be an emperor for a minute
and listen better to the wind
or to the air being still.

When anyone talked to me, whether
blame or praise or just passing time,
I’d watch the face, how the mouth
has to work, and see any strain, any
sign of what lifted the voice.

And for all, I’d know more — the earth
bracing itself and soaring, the air
finding every leaf and feather over
forest and water, and for every person
the body glowing inside the clothes
like a light.


Next Time by Mary Oliver

(via growing-orbits)

"I am the soul stretching into
the furthest reaches of my fingers
and beyond"

Philip Levine, from Last Words

(via mitochondria)

"And suddenly—all my days had been strung together like pearls."

Charles Coakley Simpson, The Mermaid

(via fables-of-the-reconstruction)

"I came back from that holiest of waves
remade, refreshed as any new tree is,
renewed, refreshed with foliage anew,
pure and prepared to rise towards the stars."

Dante, Purgatorio

(via classicpenguin)

"I want to tell what the forests
were like

I will have to speak
in a forgotten language"

W.S. Merwin, Witness

(via robcam-wfu)

"I, who have seen you amid the primal things,
Was angry when they spoke your name
In ordinary places."

Ezra PoundFrancesca

(via jatigi)

(Source: oofpoetry)

"I have never separated the writing of poetry from prayer."
"Old gods lean in close."

Mary O’Donnell, from Fairy Rath

(via the-final-sentence)

Your Peace Is What We Love, Not Your Mask (by antonio•merini)

- Pablo Neruda

Mid-Day. No one in this corner of the beach.

The Sun on high, deep, enormous, open

Has cleared the sky of every god.

Implacable as punishment, light falls

There are no ghosts, nor souls,

And the huge, solitary, ancient ocean

Seems to applaud.

- Sophia de Mello Breyner, from Marine Rose

"I have lain with strange lovers."

H. D.

(via proustitute)