190th Virtual Poetry Circle

Welcome to the 190th Virtual Poetry Circle!

Remember, this is just for fun and is not meant to be stressful.

Keep in mind what Molly Peacock’s books suggested. Look at a line, a stanza, sentences, and images; describe what you like or don’t like; and offer an opinion. If you missed my review of her book, check it out here.

Also, sign up for the 2013 Dive Into Poetry Challenge because its simple; you only need to read 1 book of poetry. Please visit the stops on the 2012 National Poetry Month Blog Tour.

Today’s poem is from Mary Oliver’s A Thousand Mornings (page 47):

Was it Necessary to Do It?

I tell you that ant is very alive!
Look at how he fusses at being stepped on.

What do you think?


  1. I think the title alone says so much and really gets you thinking. Stepping on an ant might seem so insignificant, but really, is it necessary? I agree with your comments about how pain and suffering has so much to do with being alive.

  2. I was one of those kids with the evil streak toward ants, but only ants. Rather than stepping on them, though, I wanted to see if I could light them on fire with a magnifying glass. Now, I’m a different person and feel bad for the poor creature.

    But like Jeanne, in terms of the poem, I do like that the second line throws the other line into a different light — making it a lie, but also highlighting what it means to be alive — like without pain and suffering, how do we know it is alive or that we are for that matter.

    It was such a powerful two-line poem for me, I just had to include it this week.

  3. Beth Hoffman says

    I actually got a bit angry and sad. I’m one of those people that won’t harm anything if I can help it … even an ant.

  4. I like the way the second line makes the first line a lie.

  5. gaaah! I’m with Ali! Now I feel guilty and like a murderer!

  6. Aw, kinda sad. I always feel bad when ants get squished. I’m such a softie.