The Gift of the Giving Season

I always warm to the spirit of the giving season. It offers a rare moment of connection, an opportunity to change. Often, we pledge to do just that but the spirit is, at best, seasonal.

Change is harder than we thought, and we resume our old ways. We forget the moment that brought us so close to beauty.

Fortunately, poets never forget. They have it figured out.

The Swan

Did you too see it, drifting, all night, on the black river?
Did you see it in the morning, rising into the silvery air –
An armful of white blossoms,
A perfect commotion of silk and linen as it leaned
into the bondage of its wings; just a snowbank, a bank of lilies,
Biting the air with its black beak?
Did you hear it, fluting and whistling
A shrill dark music – like the rain pelting the trees – like a waterfall
Knifing down the black ledges?
And did you see it, finally, just under the clouds – 
A white cross Streaming across the sky, its feet
Like black leaves, its wings
Like the stretching light of the river?
And did you feel it, in your heart, how it pertained to everything?
And have you too finally figured out what beauty is for?
And have you changed your life?

Mary Oliver


Aim for Even posts offer equanimity a dose at a time. No day or dose is ever the same, even if the aim is. You may read about the origins of Aim for Even here or on this site’s About page.

2 thoughts on “The Gift of the Giving Season

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  1. wow! what a line about “have you too figured out what beauty is for?” There are times when I sense the answer somewhere in my mind, and it is good to have this question hover over the mundane struggles of everyday life. thanks!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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