Lightly Child, Lightly.

Wherever it was
I was supposed to be
this morning-
whatever it was I said

I would be doing-
I was standing
at the edge of the field –
I was hurrying

through my own soul,
opening its dark doors –
I was leaning out;
I was listening.

~ Mary Oliver, from “Mockingbirds” (The Atlantic, Febuary 1994)


  • Photo: Patty Maher
  • Prior “Lightly child, lightly” Posts? Connect here.
  • Post Title & Inspiration: Aldous Huxley: “It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.”



  1. These are the most fantastic words, David. My good friend died this morning of pancreatic cancer. It was expected but more sudden than expected so we are all shocked. I love your blog even though I don’t respond adequately. Thank you very much.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Beautiful departing words. It brings all of my loved ones that have gone before me to my heart. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I totally read this in a different way – that today, regardless of what was a ‘have to’, I was forced to realign the priorities, and hear my heart. I guess I don’t ace poetry interpretation 😉

    Liked by 4 people

  4. i took it more in the sense that mimi did. you stopped in your tracks to listen, be aware, be in the moment, and all else fell away. everything else that you felt so busy with, so hurried, was no longer as important.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I’m in the Mimi and Beth camp…put aside the ‘shoulds’ and the ‘musts’ and listen to your heart. What does your soul need at this moment?

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Her words evoke something special in each of us. Great choice of photo as well David 💛

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Feels like a dream fragment.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. good

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I was leaning out. I was listening. Oh Lord, get me back to this stance..keep me here longer.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Thank you, David, for sharing some Mary Oliver with us…a great poet allows us to take the poem any where it will. Yes, to lean out and listen…anywhere, any time.

    Liked by 1 person

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