by Mary Oliver

It is possible, I suppose, that sometime

     we will learn everything

there is to learn: what the world is, for example,

     and what it means. I think this as I am crossing

from one field to another, in summer, and the

     mockingbird is mocking me, as one who either

knows enough already or knows enough to be

     perfectly content not knowing. Song being born

of quest he knows this: he must turn silent

     were he suddenly assaulted with answers. Instead

oh hear his wild, caustic, tender warbling ceaselessly

     unanswered.  At my feet the white-petaled daisies display

the small suns of their center-piece, their — if you don't

     mind my saying so — their hearts. Of course

I could be wrong, perhaps their hearts are pale and

     narrow and hidden in the roots. What do I know.

But this: it is heaven itself to take what is given,

     to see what is plain; what the sun

lights up willingly; for example — I think this

     as I reach down, not to pick but merely to touch —

the suitability of the field for the daisies, and the

     daisies for the field.

David LaMotte


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