Mary Oliver





Hummingbird Pauses at the Trumpet Vine    

Who doesn’t love
roses, and who
doesn’t love the lilies
of the black ponds

floating like flocks
of tiny swans, 
and of course, the flaming
trumpet vine

where the hummingbird comes
like a small green angel, to soak
his dark tongue
in happiness -

and who doesn’t want 
to live with the brisk 
motor of his heart
singing

like a Schubert
and his eyes
working and working like those days of rapture, 
by Van Gogh in Arles? 

Look! for most of the world
is waiting
or remembering -
most of the world is time

when we’re not here, 
not born yet, or died -
a slow fire
under the earth with all
our dumb wild blind cousins
who also
can’t even remember anymore
their own happiness -

Look! and then we will be
like the pale cool
stones, that last almost 
forever. 


spoken = Susannah Wood