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Mary Oliver

Found 17 thoughts of Mary Oliver

I simply do not distinguish between work and play.

Mary Oliver

Writers sometimes give up what is most strange and wonderful about their writing - soften their roughest edges - to accommodate themselves toward a group response.

Mary Oliver

In college, you learn how to learn. Four years is not too much time to spend at that.

Mary Oliver

My first two books are out of print and, okay, they can sleep there comfortably. It's early work, derivative work.

Mary Oliver

I love the line of Flaubert about observing things very intensely. I think our duty as writers begins not with our own feelings, but with the powers of observing.

Mary Oliver

Almost anything is too much. I am trying in my poems to have the reader be the experiencer. I do not want to be there. It is not even a walk we take together.

Mary Oliver

When it's over, I want to say: all my life I was a bride married to amazement. I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

Mary Oliver

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

So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray.

Mary Oliver

I was very careful never to take an interesting job. If you have an interesting job, you get interested in it.

Mary Oliver

I have a notebook with me all the time, and I begin scribbling a few words. When things are going well, the walk does not get anywhere; I finally just stop and write.

Mary Oliver

I have a notion that if you are going to be spiritually curious, you better not get cluttered up with too many material things.

Mary Oliver

As a child, what captivated me was reading the poems myself and realizing that there was a world without material substance which was nevertheless as alive as any other.

Mary Oliver

Poetry isn't a profession, it's a way of life. It's an empty basket; you put your life into it and make something out of that.

Mary Oliver

I worked probably 25 years by myself, just writing and working, not trying to publish much, not giving readings.

Mary Oliver

If I've done my work well, I vanish completely from the scene. I believe it is invasive of the work when you know too much about the writer.

Mary Oliver

To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.

Mary Oliver