Mary Oliver: The Lilies Break Open Over the Dark Water
that mud-hive, that gas-sponge,
leaf-yard, that rippling
dream-bowl, the leeches'
flecked and swirling
broth of life, as rich
the fists crack
open and the wands
of the lilies
quicken, they rise
like pale poles
with their wrapped beaks of lace;
they tear the surface,
the next they break open
over the dark water.
And there you are
on the shore,
fitful and thoughtful, trying
to attach them to an idea—
some news of your own life.
But the lilies
are slippery and wild—they are
devoid of meaning, they are
from the deepest
spurs of their being,
what they are impelled to do
And so, dear sorrow, are you.
Wei Wu Wei: For Síle (in "Open Secret")
When the beetle sees, it is I that am looking,
When the nightingale sings, it is I that am singing,
When the lion roars, it is I that am roaring.
But when I look for myself, I can see nothing --
for no thing is there to be seen.
Síle cannot see me either, for when she tries to see me it is
I who am looking: she can do nothing -- for only I can do anything.
The beetle can say that also, and Síle, for we are not three,
nor two, nor one.
I am the sea too, and the stars, the wind and the rain,
I am everything that has form -- for form is my seeing of it.
I am every sound -- for sound is my hearing of it,
I am all flavours, each perfume, whatever can be touched,
For that which is perceptible is my perceiving of it,
And all sentience is mine.
They have no other existence, and neither have I --
for what they are I am, and what I am they are.
What the universe is I am, and what I am the universe is.
And there is no other at all, nor any one whatsover.
Gate, gate, paragate, parasamgate, Bodhi! Svaha!