Blog | Jan 4, 2011 | 2 Comments

[your one life]

[new year’s reflections]

Another year is starting, so I’m feeling reflective. Naturally I turn to other writers for their wisdom and inspiration. One of them asks a question that you might not be able to answer, but that you might want to think about all year long — and for the rest of your life, too.

One of my favorite poems is by Mary Oliver, called “The Summer Day.”

I don’t have permission to reprint it here, but you can read it at this link, and you can order her books from Beacon Press. (Please support Beacon Press. They are a fiercely independent publishing house that has brought us many American important voices.)

I’ll just reprint my favorite lines, which come at the end:

Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

Re-reading this poem reminds me of one of my all-time favorite quotes, which is from Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. A card with this saying has been posted on my various office walls for 20 years. 

One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.

These are simple ideas and wishes from two very different, but very intelligent and thoughtful people, who worked hard at understanding life.

I hope you find some inspiration in their words.

Happy New Year!

Photo credit: American Academy of Poets on flickr. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.
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Author: Claire Wagner

I'm a seasoned freelance writer/editor and an enthusiastic community manager. I'm passionate about developing and sharing good content.

2 Comments

Absolutely delightful and insightful. And no, didn’t mean to rhyme! Thanks Claire!!

[Reply]

Absolutely delightful and insightful. And no, didn’t mean to rhyme! Thanks Claire!!

[Reply]

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