Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean—
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down—
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
The Summer Day by Mary Oliver
Let the end of all bathtubs
be this putting out to pasture
of four Victorian bowlegs
anchored in grasses.
Let all longnecked browsers
come drink from the shallows
while faucets grow rusty
and porcelain yellows.
Where once our nude forebears
soaped up in this vessel
come, cows, and come, horses.
Bring burdock and thistle,
come slaver the scum of
timothy and clover
on the cast-iron lip that
our grandsires climbed over
and let there be always
green water for sipping
that muzzles may enter thoughtful
and rise dripping.
~ Watering Trough by Maxine Kumin
Alas, that June should come when thou didst go;
I think you passed each other on the way;
And seeing thee, the Summer loved thee so
That all her loveliness she gave away;
Her rare perfumes, in hawthorn boughs distilled,
Blushing, she in thy sweeter bosom left,
Thine arms with all her virgin roses filled,
Yet felt herself the richer for thy theft;
Beggared herself of morning for thine eyes,
Hung on the lips of every bird the tune,
Breathed on thy cheek her soft vermilion dyes,
And in thee set the singing heart of June.
And so, not only do I mourn thy flight,
But Summer comes despoiled of her delight.
~ Sonnet by Willa Cather