Time To Let It Go: Poetry by Mary Oliver

Time To Let It Go and Tell About It

In honor of our beloved muse, Mary Oliver. Thank you for living fearlessly, sharing openly, and loving fiercely. Your words have meant volumes to so many of us searching for living an authentic life and striving for an authentic voice.

I know for me, Mary Oliver spoke the words about life and nature and love and fearlessness that I needed to hear, and they came to me at precisely the right times. Her poetry gave me those life instructions that I so often wondered about, in such a simple, yet eloquent and precise, manner

I hope these two Mary Oliver poems do the same for you.

May we carry on with her words forever in our pockets and our hearts, and continue to share them as the spirit moves us.

Mary Oliver
Mary Oliver was nature’s voice…Capitol Reef, Utah

Mary Oliver’s initial instructions to me:

Instructions for living a life:

Pay attention.

Be astonished.

Tell about it.

Mary Oliver’s final instructions to me:

Look, the trees
are turning
their own bodies
into pillars

of light,
are giving off the rich
fragrance of cinnamon
and fulfillment,

the long tapers
of cattails
are bursting and floating away over
the blue shoulders

of the ponds,
and every pond,
no matter what its
name is, is

nameless now.
Every year
everything
I have ever learned

in my lifetime
leads back to this: the fires
and the black river of loss
whose other side

is salvation,
whose meaning
none of us will ever know.
To live in this world

you must be able
to do three things:
to love what is mortal;
to hold it

against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.

~ Mary Oliver

Thank you to all those who share, and have shared, Mary Oliver’s words across our Universe, particularly A First Sip and also “Sometimes” (via Chris Duffy)

Jennifer Wolfe

Jennifer Wolfe, a writer-teacher-mom, is dedicated to finding the extraordinary in the ordinary moments of life by thinking deeply, loving fiercely, and teaching audaciously. Jennifer is a Google Certified Educator, Hyperdoc fanatic, and a voracious reader. Read her stories on her blog, mamawolfe, and grab free copies of her teaching and parenting resources.

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