Excerpt, “The Leaf and the Cloud” by Mary Oliver

on

 

atlanta-september-sunday

The Leaf and the Cloud

I mention them now,

I will not mention them again.

It is not lack of love

nor lack of sorrow.

But the iron thing they carried, I will not carry.

I give them – one, two, three, four – the kiss of courtesy,

of sweet thanks,

of anger, of good luck in the deep earth.

May they sleep well. May they soften.

But I will not give them the kiss of complicity.

I will not give them the responsibility for my life.

I bury it in the earth.

I sweep the closets.

I leave the home.

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