Dark is as dark does

"Dark is as dark does" is the third song of David Leisner's song cycle West Wind, which sets the poetry of Mary Oliver.

Date: 2011Composer: David LeisnerText: Mary OliverSong Collection: West Wind

Print vitals & song text


Dark is as dark does
by Mary Oliver

Dark is as dark does.

Something with the smallest wings shakes itself
From under a thumb of bark.

The ocean breathes in its silver jacket.

Outside, hanging on the trellis, in the moonlight,
the flowers are opening, each one
as fancy in its unfurl as a difficult thought.

So we cross the dark together.

Outside: the almost liquid beauty of the flowers.

Now the linnets wake.
Now the pearls of their voices are falling
in the morning light.

Did we sleep long? Is it this life still, or
is it the next life, already? Are we gone, then?
Are we there?

How will we ever know?

Support us and help us grow

Dear friends, Thank you for helping us build a comprehensive online archive of American song. Your gift is greatly appreciated.