“Sweet Darkness”

Monday, December 12, 2016 - 1:15 pm

“Sweet Darkness”

When your eyes are tired
 the world is tired also.

When your vision has gone,
 no part of the world can find you.

Time to go into the dark
 where the night has eyes
 to recognize its own.

There you can be sure
 you are not beyond love.

The dark will be your home

The night will give you a horizon
 further than you can see.

You must learn one thing.
 The world was made to be free in.

Give up all the other worlds
 except the one to which you belong.

Sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet
 confinement of your aloneness
 to learn

anything or anyone
 that does not bring you alive

is too small for you.

This poem is excerpted with permission from River Flow and The House of Belonging by David Whyte. For more poetry, visit our Poetry Radio Project.

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is an Associate Fellow at Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford. His books include The Heart Aroused: Poetry and the Preservation of the Soul in Corporate America, River Flow: New & Selected Poems, and Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment, and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words.


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  • cornfish98

    Brilliant web page.. and use of poetry. I work in the Kairos Federal Prison Ministry, and this poem can apply to, and be used by any and every resident I will meet. I hope to put it to fine use in the future. The Kairos ministry helps prepare these men who have sought forgiveness and wish to be free, to come back out into the world as better citizens in our society.

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