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Apr 7, 2020

5 Poems to Reconnect with Nature

What a lovely coincidence that Earth Month and National Poetry month both fall in April. As we find ourselves spending more time indoors (mastering the art of physical distancing), we’re also longing for nature. A chance to wander in the woods, meditate on the beach, and rest in the sun again. With that in mind, we gathered some of our favorite poems about nature. This way, we can ‘dwell inside’ the poems, and delight in the outside world (even from home). If there are poems in here that move you, share them with your fellow nature lovers - it’s a beautiful way to spread love right now. Enjoy!

From Blossoms
by Li-Young Lee

From blossoms comes
this brown paper bag of peaches
we bought from the boy
at the bend in the road where we turned toward
signs painted Peaches.

From laden boughs, from hands,
from sweet fellowship in the bins,
comes nectar at the roadside, succulent
peaches we devour, dusty skin and all,
comes the familiar dust of summer, dust we eat.

O, to take what we love inside,
to carry within us an orchard, to eat
not only the skin, but the shade,
not only the sugar, but the days, to hold
the fruit in our hands, adore it, then bite into
the round jubilance of peach.

There are days we live
as if death were nowhere
in the background; from joy
to joy to joy, from wing to wing,
from blossom to blossom to
impossible blossom, to sweet impossible blossom.

Bees
by Norman Rowland Gale

You voluble,
Velvety
Vehement fellows
That play on your
Flying and
Musical cellos,
All goldenly
Girdled you
Serenade clover,
Each artist in
Bass but a
Bibulous rover!

You passionate,
Powdery
Pastoral bandits,
Who gave you your
Roaming and
Rollicking mandates?
Come out of my
Foxglove; come
Out of my roses
You bees with the
Plushy and
Plausible noses!

Wild Geese
by Mary Oliver

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting -
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

St. Elizabeth
By Aracelis Girmay

I run high in my body
on the road toward sea.

I fall in love. The things
the wind is telling me.

The yellow sky quiet
in her quiet dress.

Old birds sending news
from the reddish hills.

& the one hawk flying
in the distance overhead.

That hawk is what
the wind says. In love

with the heaving
of my peacock chest,

with my lungs, two wings,
such flying things,

but mine for now, just for now
as I open my stride

above the good, dirt road,
fall in love with the mustard

& coriander dust,
& the far, far mountain

beveled by light, by rain,
the easy eye of the sun, now,

smoke floating across the hillside
like a face I knew once very well,

Very well, I fall in love
with the flowers & the wash

hung like prayer flags, see,
in red Juanita's yard. In love

with the earth the color of earth. In
love with the goats, their bellies & hooves,

& the goat mouths bleating
as they greet me on the road.

I fall in love. How they wear
their strange & double-eyes.

How they do not blink
or laugh at me

or say a thing I understand
when I ask them in my English,

because they circle around my feet,
as if they always knew me,

Were you my children once?
Did I know your names?

Oh, little magics?
Little children?

More Than Enough

by Marge Piercy

The first lily of June opens its red mouth.
All over the sand road where we walk
multiflora rose climbs trees cascading
white or pink blossoms, simple, intense
the scene drifting like colored mist.

The arrowhead is spreading its creamy
clumps of flower and the blackberries
are blooming in the thickets. Season of
joy for the bee. The green will never
again be so green, so purely and lushly
new, grass lifting its wheaty seedheads
into the wind. Rich fresh wine
of June, we stagger into you smeared
with pollen, overcome as the turtle
laying her eggs in roadside sand.

 


 

What’s your favorite nature poem or lyric? Share with us on Instagram.