Mary Oliver’s poem, Praying, is a lesson on attention, receptivity, listening and writing

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.

~ Mary Oliver ~

(Thirst)

An inspiration for a poem came to me from such receptivity to a tree. The first words entered my mind while admiring it. I wrote them down, and the next morning, I rewrote them as a stanza, and then the sequential stanzas naturally followed, reiterating what Mary Oliver describes. It was as if I was given a creative seed and it sprouted. This gift from the tree was much appreciated. I later called it Being in Nature. Its sequel, trees, was about the nature of trees, and what we can learn from them. Another poem once came to me from a rock with a sense of humor. You can read RIVER ROCK SPEAKS in my Vancouver Park Poems.

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5 Responses to “Mary Oliver’s poem, Praying, is a lesson on attention, receptivity, listening and writing”

  1. Being in Nature | The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] What’s said here is what happened to me: Mary Oliver’s poem, Praying, is a lesson on attention, receptivity, listening and writing. […]

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  2. Mary Oliver’s Summer Day is filled with wonder | The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] Related: Mary Oliver’s poem, Praying, is a lesson on attention, receptivity, listening and writing. […]

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  3. Mary Oliver’s Summer Day is filled with wonder | The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] Related: Mary Oliver’s poem, Praying, is a lesson on attention, receptivity, listening and writing. […]

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  4. Mary Oliver’s transcendent experience at the lake, put into words, might leave you breathless | The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] these other lovely poems by Mary Oliver: Summer Day, Varanasi, Praying, Wild Geese, and The […]

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  5. The job of a poet — someone’s gotta do it! | The Uncarved Blog Says:

    […] might leave you breathless.  Enjoy these other lovely poems by Mary Oliver: Summer Day, Varanasi, Praying, Wild Geese, and The […]

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