10 Inspiring Quotes from Poet Mary Oliver

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Mary Oliver passed away at the age of 83 on January 17, 2019. Guideposts honors her work with some of her best poetry quotes and sayings.

Mary Oliver, who published dozens of poetry and essay collections during her decades-long career, was known for her affinity for nature and animal life. She won several awards for her work, including a Pulitzer Prize and a National Book Award. She passed away at the age of 83 on January 17, 2019. Guideposts honors her work with some of her best poetry quotes and sayings.

Instructions for living a life.  Pay attention.  Be astonished.  Tell about it.

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Instructions for living a life.  Pay attention.  Be astonished.  Tell about it.

—from Sometimes


There are so many stories, more beautiful than answers.

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There are so many stories, more beautiful than answers. 

—from Spring

Well, who doesn’t want the sun after the long winter?

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Well, who doesn’t want the sun after the long winter?

—from Spring


And again this morning as always I am stopped as the world comes back wet and beautiful

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And again this morning as always I am stopped as the world comes back wet and beautiful

—from Forty Years


Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?

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Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?

—from The Summer Day


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.

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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. 

—from When Death Comes


I tell you this to break your heart, by which I mean only that it break open and never close again to the rest of the world.

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I tell you this to break your heart, by which I mean only that it break open and never close again to the rest of the world.

—from Lead

Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift.

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Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift.

—from The Uses of Sorrow


I held my breath as we do sometimes to stop time when something wonderful has touched us.

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I held my breath as we do sometimes to stop time when something wonderful has touched us.

—from Snow Geese


Sometimes I need only to stand wherever I am to be blessed.

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Sometimes I need only to stand wherever I am to be blessed.

—from It Was Early

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