Wild Geese

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The Text

You do not have to be good.

You do not have to walk on your knees

for a hundred miles through the desert


You only have to let the soft animal of your


love what it loves.

Tell me about your despair, yours, and I will tell

you mine.

Meanwhile the world goes on.

Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of

the rain

are moving across the landscape,

over the prairies and the deep trees,

the mountains and the rivers.

Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean

blue air,

are heading home again.

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,

the world offers itself to your imagination,

calls to you like wild geese, harsh and

exciting -

over and over announcing your place

in the family of things.