by Mary Oliver
That pretty little beast, a poem,
has a mind of its own.
Sometimes I want it to crave apples
but it wants red meat.
Sometimes I want to walk peacefully
on the shore
and it wants to take off all its clothes
and dive in.
Sometimes I want to use small words
and make them important
and it starts shouting the dictionary,
Sometimes I want to sum up and give thanks,
putting things in order
and it starts dancing around the room
on its four furry legs, laughing
and calling me outrageous.
But sometimes, when I’m thinking about you,
and no doubt smiling,
it sits down quietly, one paw under its chin,
and just listens.
From Felicity, New York: Penguin Press, 2015.