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“Picking Blueberries” by Mary Oliver

Picking Blueberries

Once, in summer,
In the blueberries,
I fell asleep, and woke
When a deer stumbled against me.

I guess
She was so busy with her own happiness
She had grown careless
And was just wandering along

Listening
To the wind as she leaned down
To lip up the sweetness.
So, there we were

With nothing between us
But a few leaves, and the wind’s
Glossy voice
Shouting instructions.

The deer
Backed away finally
And flung up her white tail
And went floating off toward the trees –

But the moment before she did that
Was so wide and so deep
It has lasted to this day;
I have only to think of her –

The flower of her amazement
And the stalled breath of her curiosity,
And even the damp touch of her solicitude
Before she took flight-

To be absent again from this world
And alive, again, in another,
For thirty years
sleepy and amazed,

Rising out of the rough weeds
Listening and looking.
Beautiful girl,
Where are you?

.

Mary Oliver, 1935-2019

© 1957 Mary Oliver

Photo by Joanna Kosinska on Unsplash

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