I Looked Up

I looked up and there it was
among the green branches of the pitchpines -

thick bird,
a ruffle of fire trailing over the shoulders and down the back -

color of copper, iron, bronze –
lighting up the dark branches of the pine.

What misery to be afraid of death.
What wretchedness, to believe only in what can be proven.

When I made a little sound
it looked at me, then it looked past me.

Then it rose, the wings enormous and opulent,
and, as I said, wreathed in fire.

- Mary Oliver

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(Mary Oliver Poems)

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