The Prompter Room

For Tuesday, September 27, 2016:

[Please note that the original poem is formatted into couplets, but for some reason WordPress won’t let me follow that formatting (I tried three times).  As you read, then, allow yourself a bit of breath time after every two lines to follow Oliver’s original intent for this beautiful composition.]


“Fall Song,” by Mary Oliver

Another year gone, leaving everywhere

its rich spiced residues: vines, leaves,

the uneaten fruits crumbling damply

in the shadows, unmattering back

from the particular island

of this summer, this Now, that now is nowhere

except underfoot, moldering

in that black subterranean castle

of unobservable mysteries – roots and sealed seeds

and the wanderings of water.  This

I try to remember when time’s measure

painfully chafes, for instance when autumn

flares out at the last, boisterous and like us longing

to stay – how everything lives, shifting

from one bright vision to another, forever

in these momentary pastures.