The journey

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice—
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do—
determined to save
the only life you could save.

Your own.

by (the brilliant) Mary Oliver

Friends, don’t listen to the voices around you, shouting their bad advice.
Don’t give in to the people begging you to mend their lives.
Recognize your own voice. Save your own life.
No one else can do it for you.
And you can’t do it for anyone else.
This is what I’ve taken from Mary’s poem.

What do you see in it?


  1. The risk to blossom « Il Bel Far Niente - January 18, 2011

    […] If you want to be somewhere else, if you want to blossom, you will have to make a journey. […]

Leave a Reply