Review of Red Bird: Poems by Mary Oliver

Red Bird: Poems by Mary Oliver

Review: This was the first time reading Mary Oliver, but I was not moved all that much by her poetry. Most likely could be because of the my age and experiences- I could not connect. Also I’m not big into nature, so with this collection centered around nature. Was probably not a good choice to pick for a first dive into Oliver.

Favorite quote:


So long as I am hanging on

I want to be young and noble.

I want to be bold.


So Jaid the great buck, named Swirler,

as he stepped like a king past me

the week before he was arrow-killed.


And so said the wren in the bush

after hard year

of love, of nest-life, of singing.


And so say I

every morning, just before sunrise,

wading the edge of the dark ocean.


Would I? Reread? No. Recommend? No, I don’t think so.

Rating: 1 out of 5 stars.

Edition: Paperback, 96 pages.

Poetry. Nature. Adult. 

Published April 1st 2009 by Beacon Press (first published January 1st 2008).

SummaryMary Oliver’s twelfth book of poetry, Red Bird comprises sixty-one poems, the most ever in a single volume of her work. Overflowing with her keen observation of the natural world and her gratitude for its gifts, for the many people she has loved in her seventy years, as well as for her disobedient dog Percy, Red Bird is a quintessential collection of Oliver’s finest lyrics.

-Summary from

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