This week, we lost a great American poet, Mary Oliver. Mary Oliver was born in Ohio in 1935 and rose to become one of America’s best-known poets, often evoking themes of nature and animal life in her work. During her tremendous career, she won the Pulitzer Prize in 1984 and the National Book Award in 1992. You can read a full remembrance in the LA Times.

In a recent interview with Jim Svejda, composer Morten Lauridsen, who’s taught at USC for over 50 years, said he’s started nearly every class with a poem. “Poets inform us,” he said. “They are doing with words what we are doing with music.”

“Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting—-
over and over announcing your place in the family of things.”

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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