Wednesday, April 27 – Mary Oliver and Pine Ridge, SD
A friend sent me a Mary Oliver writing, new to me. It doesn’t quite read like a poem. More like two small essays connected. They remind me of a saying-set I wrote ten years ago or so imagining Lakota (Sioux) wisdom opening places in my imagination. Living on Pine Ridge for much of my twenties and now for about a week late in May each year, I spend time with Lakota friends and visit 5 or 6 sacred places there: meadowlarks, prairie grass and badlands, the profile of the Black Hills 60-70 miles to the west, thunder and lightning storms, horses running free. I’ll head out there this May 25 for 7 days. A restorative time.
Mary Oliver’s two paragraphs began today’s post. Thanks to a soul friend who introduced me to this new piece of her writing.
Enjoy the day.
Today’s Post: “Foolishness? No, it’s not.” Mary Oliver
Sometimes I spend all day trying to count
the leaves on a single tree. To do this I
have to climb branch by branch and
write down the numbers in a little book.
So I suppose, from their point of view,
it¹s reasonable that my friends say: what
foolishness! She¹s got her head in the clouds
But it¹s not. Of course I have to give up,
but by then I’m half crazy with the wonder
of it – the abundance of the leaves, the
quietness of the branches, the hopelessness
of my effort. And I am in that delicious
and important place, roaring with laughter,
full of earth-praise.
a wisdom-saying born on the Pine Ridge Lakota Reservation
“Time spent baking bread follows the pace of yeast”
“Motorcycling alone; I move as a tiny person in a vast world”
“If I pause long enough, I hear the sound of grass growing, and trees, each at its own pace.”