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The Dovekie

There really is such a bird.

I had my doubts as I read Mary Oliver’s poem about the Dovekie that such a bird ever took flight. I wondered did she invent this tiny bird? So I googled it and sure enough it is a real wingéd creature, beautifully depicted in her poem. I read the poem this morning in her book Why I Wake Up Early

I searched online for the poem in order to post it in this blog. Although many of her poems are in lots of poetry sites, I could not find this one. It is as obscure, perhaps, as unknown as most people. We are only known by the people in our immediate circle of family, friends and community.

Yet this little black and white bird, smaller than a sparrow, dips and fishes, its wings whirring as fast as a hummingbird’s.

It made Mary Oliver happy to observe and contemplate its life, its flight, its significance. And she came out of her reflection with a poem about the awe of life, the joy, the abundance, the significance of life.

I am also reminded of the importance and the okayness of being little.

I am glad to be one little ordinary person in a world of many.


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