Reading Mary Oliver's poetry can make my chest heavy. Her words create such a vivid picture of a moment she has witnessed in nature and an epiphany of how that moment mirrors life's experiences. This is a stunning piece that I will bookmark and visit later. I will read her clever words again when I am feeling life is not so perfect. I will also be reminded that there is mystery to life. I will let myself be dazzled by that mystery, and the light and the beauty all around. I believe too Mary.

The Ponds

Every year
the lilies
are so perfect
I can hardly believe

their lapped light crowding
the black,
mid-summer ponds.
Nobody could count all of them —

the muskrats swimming
among the pads and the grasses
can reach out
their muscular arms and touch

only so many, they are that
rife and wild.
But what in this world
is perfect?

I bend closer and see
how this one is clearly lopsided —
and that one wears an orange blight —
and this one is a glossy cheek

half nibbled away —
and that one is a slumped purse
full of its own
unstoppable decay.

Still, what I want in my life
is to be willing
to be dazzled —
to cast aside the weight of facts

and maybe even
to float a little
above this difficult world.
I want to believe I am looking

into the white fire of a great mystery.
I want to believe that the imperfections are nothing —
that the light is everything — that it is more than the sum
of each flawed blossom rising and fading. And I do


Claude Monet Water Lilies (1906)