When death comes like the hungry bear in autumn; when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse
to buy me, and snaps the purse shut; when death comes like the measles-pox;
when death comes like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,
I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering: what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?
And therefore I look upon everything as a brotherhood and a sisterhood, and I look upon time as no more than an idea, and I consider eternity as another possibility,
and I think of each life as a flower, as common as a field daisy, and as singular,
and each name a comfortable music in the mouth tending as all music does, toward silence,
and each body a lion of courage, and something precious to the earth.
When it's over, I want to say: all my life I was a bride married to amazement. I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it is over, I don't want to wonder if I have made of my life something particular, and real. I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened, or full of argument.
I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.
~ from "New and Selected Poems" by Mary Oliver
I first heard this poem today and was completely spellbound; one of the first things I did when getting on the computer tonight was to add Mary Oliver's books to my wish list - I cannot wait to read more of her poetry!