Why I Wake Early: New Poems

Front Cover
Beacon Press, 2004 - Poetry - 71 pages
8 Reviews
Mary Oliver has been writing poetry for nearly five decades, and in that time she has become America's foremost poetic voice on our experience of the physical world. This collection presents forty-seven new poems, all written within the last two years, and each exhibiting the power and grace that have become the hallmarks of Oliver's work.

The volume includes poems on crickets, toads, trout lilies, black snakes, goldenrod, bears, greeting the morning, watching the deer and, finally, lingering in happiness. Each poem is imbued with the extraordinary perceptions of a poet who considers the everyday in our lives and the natural world around us and finds a multitude of reasons to marvel.

On the eve of the publication of her third volume of poems, Twelve Moons, Archibald MacLeish wrote to Mary Oliver: "You have indeed entered the kingdom. You have done something better than create your own world: you have discovered the world we all live in and do not see and cannot feel."

In the twenty-five years since, Mary Oliver has published nine more volumes of poetry, each revealing new aspects of our world, inviting us to pause with her and to see and feel them. In this new volume she demonstrates, perhaps more affectionately than ever before, "what it means to be human and what is worthwhile about life,"* or, more simply, why the poet wakes early. (*Library Journal)

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User Review  - chrisblocker - LibraryThing

I've heard a great number of Mary Oliver's poems throughout my years in creative writing programs. I have never heard one I didn't not love. I was enthusiastic to finally read a complete volume of her ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - sighedtosleep - LibraryThing

I appreciate this book because it holds a lot of optimism and love, which are ideas often overlooked in lit. A while ago I found this girl lecturing on how "deepness" and the highest truths can only ... Read full review

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About the author (2004)

Mary Oliver is one of the most celebrated and best-selling poets in America. Her books include Red Bird; Our World; Thirst; Blue Iris; New and Selected Poems, Volume One; and New and Selected Poems, Volume Two. She has also published five books of prose, including Rules for the Dance and, most recently, Long Life. She lives in Provincetown, Massachusetts.

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