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Author of AGAINST A DARKENING SKY, THE EMPTY ROOM, OUR DAILY BREAD, and others. Find out more at www.LaurenBDavis.com. I read as if my sanity depended upon it.. . . oh, wait, it does! Snort.

To make our lives whole . . .

Dog Songs - Mary Oliver

Richard Caras said, "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole."  How true.  


Poet Mary Oliver, whose work has garnered the Pulitzer and the National Book Award, turns her eye on dogs.  The poems elebrate the canine companions who have enriched the author's world, exploring how they have accompanied her walks, inspired her work and served as life guides. She's one of literature's great dog-lovers and every poem elevates both subject and reader.


Naturally, Oliver being Oliver, she uses dog-sensibility (if you will) to direct the reader to the spiritual truth, the sacredness of the world and every ordinary moment.  Her poetry is deceptively simple, and easily accessible.  That makes it no less profound.  Consider:



"I had a dog
     who loved flowers.
         Briskly she went
             through the fields,

yet paused
    for the honeysuckle
        or the rose,
            her dark head

and her wet nose
         the face
             of every one

with its petals
    of silk
        with its fragrance

.  .  .

into the air
    where the bees,
        their bodies
             heavy with pollen,

hovered — 
    and easily
       she adored
           every blossom,

not in the serious,
    careful way
        that we choose
            this blossom or that blossom — 

the way we praise or don't praise — 
    the way we love
        or don't love — 
            but the way

we long to be — 
    that happy
        in the heaven of earth — 
            that wild, that loving."
A welcome addition to the collection of any book and/or dog lover.