Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Sunflowers -- Poem by Mary Oliver

Come with me
into the field of sunflowers.
Their faces are burnished disks,
their dry spines

creak like ship masts,
their green leaves,
so heavy and many,
fill all day with the sticky

sugars of the sun.
Come with me
to visit the sunflowers,
they are shy

but want to be friends;
they have wonderful stories
of when they were young -
the important weather,

the wandering crows.
Don't be afraid
to ask them questions!
Their bright faces,

which follow the sun,
will listen, and all
those rows of seeds -
each one a new life!

hope for a deeper acquaintance;
each of them, though it stands
in a crowd of many,
like a separate universe,

is lonely, the long work
of turning their lives
into a celebration
is not easy. Come

and let us talk with those modest faces,
the simple garments of leaves,
the coarse roots in the earth
so uprightly burning.

6 comments:

The Galloping Gardener said...

A lovely poem - thank you.

Rosey Pollen said...

Thanks for sharing this wonderful poem. I have been enjoying reading your blog.
Rosey

Benjamin Vogt said...

RP--Glad you stopped by! I was fliting through your blogs and saw you just sent a child off to college. Hope she doesn't have a first year prof like me--students say that gettime me their first term was a rude awakening to college (but I take that as a compliment, because that's my job). :) As for gardening, I can't imagine it's easy at your elevation--what a different world!

eyeofh said...

"the long work
of turning their lives
into a celebration
is not easy." ...what a fantastic line!

Anonymous said...

How beautiful. I had never thought about the noise a sunflower field would make. But of course, they would creak!

Gaia Gardener: said...

Mary Oliver's poetry is wonderful - thanks for sharing this one, which I hadn't come across before.