Saturday, March 23, 2013

White Flowers

A friend of mine lost her luminous, joyful, beautiful boy last week. What can we do with grief like this but peel back the layers and look for truth amidst the snowdrifts and the roots and the stars and the pines?



White Flowers

Last night
in the fields
I lay down in the darkness
to think about death, 
but instead I fell asleep, 
as if in a vast and sloping room
filled with those white flowers
that open all summer, 
sticky and untidy,
in the warm fields. 
When I woke
the morning light was just slipping
in front of the stars,
and I was covered 
with blossoms. 
I don't know
how it happened--
I don't know
if my body went diving down
under the sugary vines
in some sleep-sharpened affinity
with the depths, or whether
that green energy
rose like a wave
and curled over me, claiming me
in its husky arms. 
I pushed them away, but I didn't rise. 
Never in my life had I felt so plush,
or so slippery,
or so resplendently empty. 
Never in my life
had I felt myself so near
that porous line
where my own body was done with
and the roots and the stems and the flowers
began. 


--Mary Oliver