The Meditation of Reading a Poem

The Meditation of Reading a Poem

by Joan Myles

What is it about poetry that so readily connects readers with their spiritual selves?

Is it the access it provides to imagination? Is it the use of metaphor and simile that enables us to think outside the physical box? Is it the expansive qualities of mind such modes of thinking enliven?

Take a few deep breaths and slowly read the following poem by Mary Oliver (1935-2019) .Let the words carry you away andseehow far you fly.

Seven White Butterflies

by Mary Oliver

Seven white butterflies

delicate in a hurry look

how they bang the pages

of their wings as they fly

to the fields of mustard yellow

and orange and plain

gold all eternity

is in the moment this is what

Blake said what Whitman said such

wisdom in the agitated

motions of the mind seven

dancers floating

even as worms toward

paradise see how they banter

and riot and rise

to the trees flutter

lob their white bodies into

the invisible wind weightless

lacy willing

to deliver themselves unto

the universe now each settles

down on a yellow thumb on a

brassy stem now

all seven are rapidly sipping

from the golden towers who

would have thought it could be so easy?

Did you feel yourself carried into the scene–almost transformed into a fluttering being yourself?

Did you hear a deeper message apart from the words and images on the page?

Now go back and read the poem without pausing at line ends or stanza breaks.

*I’ll wait for you*

Did you feel the rush and ecstasy of discovery?

Did you experience the fulfillment and peace of sipping alongside your lofty fellows?

Did you find the delight of realization with the final question?

I would love to know your thoughts and your experience with this poem

Please feel free to share them with me in the comments or at the contact page.

Wishing you sweetness and fanciful flight,

About me:

Poetry and I go way back. Nursery rhymes, Dr. Seuss, limricks and ballads–my interest and involvement expanded year by year until finally I came to hear poems everywhere. Poetic rhythms soothe and uplift me. Poetic imagery and freedom of language excite my imagination. And poetry’s almost magical lilt and layering of the sensible with the elusive awaken my understanding and appreciation of Life.

You might say poety sings my spirit.

Of course my favorite poets shift as I evolve. Most recently, I resonate with Mary Oliver’s simple words and startling phrases. She never fails to bring me back to Creation, to Spirit, to myself. And when I want a jolt, an out-of-myself into who-knows-where experience I turn to Roberto Juarroz with his symbolic imagery and obtuse view of reality.

For me, poetry is not just a way to express myself. Poetry is where I dwell. And writing a poem is simply exhaling what I receive with each breath of Life I am given.

What could be sweeter!

5 thoughts on “The Meditation of Reading a Poem

  1. I too Love Poetry. To read and make small poems too myself. How are You Dear Joan?
    I have sent an E mail asking if I could send some of My website cards and Ball point pens “Free” to share with those around you 🙂
    I have launched My Mission, “Gone Public with The Wellness of Mental Health” as by Year 2030, World Health Organization has Declared “Mental Health will be biggest Health Issue” that The World will have!
    So it is “All Over The World” and I am Trying “To Spread The Word ~ That I have Completely Recovered and it Is Possible to Become Well too” in My Own Way!
    Let me know. You are “Under No Obligation To Do Anything in Return. Only I hope to Spread “The Healing Energies” as Much as Possible to Everyone ❤
    Sending Many Blessings of Love, Light and Healing Energies as usual. With Kind and Loving Thoughts 🙂 ❤ 🙂

    1. Hello my dear friend.
      So sweet to hear from you!
      I have replied to your note, and wish you all good things as you move forward with your work. Love and Blessings to you! *willows in mist**hummingbirds*

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