I have been reading Mary Oliver's Thirst, and, as always happens when I read her, my own poems seem under her spell. Here's today's:
I have been neglecting my work.
I have picked up too many dirty towels
and washed too many loads of laundry,
rinsed too many glasses
when I should have been staring into space
or at a white moth on the window ledge or at stars.
I took my daughters to the mall
and out for tacos, and it isn't that taste and color won't do,
only that I should have taken them to the ocean
and walked barefoot with them in the sand.
I have been grading papers
and posting lessons about apostrophes
when I should have given my students
blank notebooks and set them, too,
loose in the world to look,
to see how the snow geese cross so high in the white sky.
I have neglected my work,
working too hard to be good,
when my job, always, has been to be wild.