Every Sunday, Oprah is setting an intention for the upcoming week—exclusively for Oprah Insiders. Join us for reflections on themes like resilience, integrity, renewal, and more.
This week, Oprah shares a message on the power of poetry for National Poetry Month.
Hi, everybody! And welcome to my garden, a place that brings me such solace.
"What I want to say is that the past is the past, and the present is what your life is, and you are capable of choosing what that will be.”
Take those words to heart, because they were written by one of my favorite poets, the late, great Mary Oliver, and are from a poem entitled "Mornings at Blackwater." Like so much of her poetry—and the work of so many other poets that I read again and again, savoring them each time—just a few seemingly simple phrases perfectly express what we need to know just then, in that moment. The symmetry we feel when we are connected, at one with nature and the world. Which is just one of the reasons we're celebrating National Poetry Month this April.
Poems nourish our souls—they certainly do for me—and always remind me to be more grateful. So I hope you'll join us in paying tribute this month to poetry on Oprah Daily. We’ll be honoring poets all of April, including recommendations for 29 of the best new volumes of poetry, and an essay and poem by National Book Award finalist Ada Limon.
Now, Ms. Limon says she thought she wrote poems in order to help readers recommit to the world, but through the years realized that the person she writes for the most is herself. I bet that's true of a lot of poets. She tells Oprah Daily: “The poems I write, the ones that offer shreds of hope or gratitude, are written because I need that hope or gratitude desperately in that moment—I need it the way plants need light,” she says. And then she shares that hope and gratitude with the rest of the world.
Now I want to read for you the last line of Mornings at Blackwater, one of my favorites: “So come to the pond, or the river of your imagination, or the harbor of your longing, and put your lips to the world, and live your life.”
Can’t do better than that advice! Read some poetry this week. It'll soothe your soul.
Do you have a favorite poem, or a story about how poetry has influenced your life? Let us know in the comments below.