What will you do with your one wild and precious life? - a poem & a thought

I was helping my friend move house last month and while we obsessed over the possibilities of how they may be able to achieve an ultra-glam, ultra-dreamy baroque fantasy withtheir interior, we started talking about our goals for the coming year and beyond. The conversation took its many twists and turns, meandering through my screams (some would say screeches) of excitement and us bonding over the struggle we've both endured and conquered to get where we are.

"We really are doing the damn thing and I'm so proud of us!" they said to me as we smoked on their balcony.

"We really are doing the damn thing. I'm so proud of us.", I then thought quietly to myself...

In our conversation, during moving things around to create space for possibly the most ornate sofa that Roman Road and its residents had ever seen, they picked up a book by Mary Oliver and told me about her writing. I wasn't too familiar but when they spoke to me about 'The Summer Day' arguably one of her most famous works, something hit me. Specifically, the question - 'Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?'.

The question moved me.

And in being moved, I chose to respond.

What will you do with your one wild and precious life?

What will I do?

What will I do?

With my one wild and precious life I will love



Fearlessly whoever I so choose

However many I feel love flow through

However far that love may take me

I will let it

For I am free

With my one wild and precious life

I will feel

The dizzying heights

The crushing lows

The adrenaline rushes through laughter and excitement

And also from life’s deafening blows

I will run

To whatever corner of the Earth calls

Whatever natural wonder I can find

Be that in person or

In my mind

I will imagine

Dream up colours, animals, angels and demons

It’s my life - I need no rhyme or reason

I will wail

Into the wind

Scream at God should I feel to

Question His moves in my life

Question my existence and that of you

I will have those conversations

The ones that make us squirm

Ask why you stopped me when all I wanted was to learn

Ask why you hit me when all I needed was a word

Ask why you’ve conveniently forgotten the damages incurred

On my body

My psyche

My soul

With my one precious life -

I will be honest

With myself and all around

So I am remembered as

Authentic, Loving, Kind, Inquisitive, Funny


When I am laid to final rest in the ground


D. x


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