Sometimes Mondays
Tortoise-ing Along

UP-rooted: A One Little Word Update



This has been a very one-little-word-ish month for me. Not only was Ali Edwards' August prompt (about the stories we tell ourselves) inspirational and challenging to play with, but my own little health-crisis turned me rather upside-down besides.

I was . . . UP-rooted, you might say.

I'm actually still sifting through the fallout of a very thoughtful month. (You can bet there will be more later.) For now, I'll share a glimpse of my Root journal. And share the poem that's been a companion for me all month long.


The Fourth Sign of the Zodiac (Part 3)
Mary Oliver

I know, you never intended to be in this world.
But you're in it all the same.

So why not get started immediately.

I mean, belonging to it.
There is so much to admire, to weep over.

And to write music or poems about.

Bless the feet that take you to and fro.
Bless the eyes and the listening ears.
Bless the tongue, the marvel of taste.
Bless touching.

You could live a hundred years, it's happened.
Or not.
I am speaking from the fortunate platform 
of many years,
none of which, I think, I ever wasted.
Do you need a prod?
Do you need a little darkness to get you going?
Let me be as urgent as a knife, then,
and remind you of Keats,
so single of purpose and thinking, for a while,
he had a lifetime.


Mary Oliver, “The Fourth Sign of the Zodiac” from Blue Horses (Penguin Press, 2014). Copyright © 2014 by Mary Oliver.


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That seems an especially appropriate poem to accompany your root/uproot travels. I had to look up Keats to be reminded that he only lived to be 25. Thanks to you and Mary Oliver for reminding us that while we might act like we have a lifetime, it is indeed finite, and I often need a little darkness to get me going.


I'm 'feeling' more than I am 'saying' after this heart post, Kym. The only word I can put to it right now is Honor.


You certainly were uprooted in August. I'm glad things are feeling more stable for you now. And nothing like not being able to do things to make us appreciate it when we can do them again. XOXO


Another new-to-me Mary Oliver poem - very nice! You certainly did experience some UP-Rooting recently. Hopefully that is done for now.

kathy b

it is tough to up root. Your finding Mary
O's poem is perfect . Nice ink


I suppose an upside of a health issue is that it does force you to look inward and reflect. I am sorry you've felt uprooted and hope that by now you're starting to feel better and put down those roots again.

How is it that there is always a perfect Mary Oliver poem for every situation?


I love this poem, Kym. Thank you so much for sharing it! There is comfort in there for all of us, and how lovely of her (and you) to remind us all of that.

I hope that your days are easier and that your flare is receding to the shadows. Much love my friend.


I hope September is easier for you in all the ways it needs to be - and special thanks for a bit of Mary Oliver today!


I hope today is a good day for you. You've now reminded me to find my Mary Oliver books.


Mary has a poem to fit anyone at any time for anything they're going through. She is a master. I hope you continue to improve and that your September finds your roots in renewing soil. xo

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