Forty poems by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Mary Oliver
"Mary Oliver's poetry is fine and deep; it reads like a blessing," wrote Stanley Kunitz. For the many admirers of Mary Oliver's dazzling poetry and luminous vision, as well as for those who may be coming to her work for the first time, What Do We Know will be a revelation. These forty poems-of observing, of searching, of pausing, of astonishment, of giving thanks embrace in every sense the natural world, its unrepeatable moments and its ceaseless cycles. Mary Oliver evokes unforgettable images from one hundred white-sided dolphins on a summer day to bees that have memorized every stalk and leaf in a field even as she reminds us, after Emerson, that "the invisible and imponderable is the sole fact."
About the Author
Born in a small town in Ohio, Mary Oliver published her first book of poetry in 1963 at the age of 28. Over the course of her long career, she received numerous awards. Her fourth book, American Primitive, won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1984. She led workshops and held residencies at various colleges and universities, including Bennington College, where she held the Catharine Osgood Foster Chair for Distinguished Teaching. She was the author of more than twenty books, including The Leaf and the Cloud and Long Life. Her many accolades include the National Book Award. She died in 2019.
Praise for Mary Oliver
"A master of spare and evocative imagery."—Poetry
"What good company Mary Oliver is!"—Los Angeles Times
"A great poet....She is amazed but not blinded."—Boston Globe
"The gift of Oliver's poetry is that she communicates the beauty she finds in the world and makes is unforgettable."—Miami Herald
"Oliver's poems are thoroughly convincing as genuine, moving, and implausible as the first caressing breeze of spring."—The New York Times
"Oliver might be accused of an untransformed and reactionary romanticism. One would think that poems about self, nature, death, and ecstasy had run their course in English. Think again."—Chicago Tribune
"Who wouldn't want to be part of Mary Oliver's world?"—Appalachian Review