Song of the Builders

On a summer morning
I sat down
on a hillside
to think about God –

a worthy pastime.
Near me, I saw
a single cricket;
it was moving the grains of the hillside

this way and that way.
How great was its energy,
how humble its effort.
Let us hope

it will always be like this,
each of us going on
in our inexplicable ways
building the universe.

–by Mary Oliver, from Why I Wake Early, 2004

Today was a contemplative day for me. I felt as if only the body part of me was doing the daily work. But certainly there are those other days, those cricket days, when I am completely bent on doing things. I’m glad Mary Oliver wrote this poem. I was feeling ashamed because I thought I was lazy. The poem didn’t exactly justify my lack of doing; it brought to light what my mind was doing.


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