Poem of the Week, “Why I Wake Early”

Why I Wake Early
by Mary Oliver

Hello, sun in my face.
Hello, you who make the morning
and spread it over the fields
and into the faces of the tulips
and the nodding morning glories,
and into the windows of, even, the
miserable and crotchety–

best preacher that ever was,
dear star, that just happens
to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness,
to ease us with warm touching,
to hold us in the great hands of light–
good morning, good morning, good morning.

Watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness.


I am posting a poem because my life should finally be back to normal soon. Classes start next week, and with them I am hoping that I will regain some balance and some scheduling in my life. Poems of the week might actually happen every week! Of course, I’ll be working 5 different jobs, so we’ll have to see.

Anyway! I chose this poem because I am feeling especially grumpy today and I had to get up very early. The only redeeming thing about this morning was the beautiful, bright, warm sun on my face. It almost made the fact that all three of my normal coffee haunts were closed because they had no power (seriously, the universe is out to get me).

“Why I Wake Early” is the title poem of Mary Oliver’s 2004 collection Why I Wake Early. Mary Oliver writes deceptively simple poetry, which is delicious and exactly what suits my mood right now.
Poets.org link: http://www.poets.org/poet.php/prmPID/265
Poetry Foundation link: http://www.poetryfoundation.org/bio/mary-oliver