Put it down.

Put it down.

“That time 
I thought I could not
 go any closer to grief 
without dying

I went closer,
and I did not die.

Surely God
 had his hand in this, as well as friends.

Still, I was bent,
and my laughter,
as the poet said,

was nowhere to be found.

Then said a friend of mine: 
“It’s not the weight you carry

but how you carry it  -
books, bricks, grief -
 it’s all in the way 
you embrace it, balance it, carry it

when you cannot, and would not,
 put it down.”

So I went practicing.

Have you noticed?

Have you heard
 the laughter
 that comes, now and again,
out of my startled mouth?

How I linger 
to admire 
the things of this world
 that are kind, and maybe

also troubled.

How I feel  a love again 
to which there is no reply?”

Mary Oliver 

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