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More poems by Mary OliverMary Oliver | Print this page.Print | View and Write CommentsComments | Books by Mary OliverBooks by Mary Oliver

Poem (The spirit likes to dress up...)

Mary Oliver

   
The spirit
  likes to dress up like this:
    ten fingers, 
      ten toes,

shoulders, and all the rest
  at night
    in the black branches,
      in the morning

in the blue branches
  of the world.
    It could float, of course,
      but would rather

plumb rough matter.
  Airy and shapeless thing,
    it needs 
      the metaphor of the body,

lime and appetite,
  the oceanic fluids;
    it needs the body's world,
      instinct

and imagination
  and the dark hug of time,
    sweetness
      and tangibility,

to be understood,
  to be more than pure light
    that burns
      where no one is --

so it enters us --
  in the morning
    shines from brute comfort
      like a stitch of lightning;

and at night
  lights up the deep and wondrous
    drownings of the body
      like a star.

Added: 2 Mar 2002 | Last Read: 18 Dec 2018 10:23 PM | Viewed: 10568 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/3174/ | Viewed on 18 December 2018.
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