I am trying to find a wonderful poem she wrote about a woman she encountered whose job it was to clean ash trays ... using water from the airport toilets. Mary Oliver wrote such a moving poem (without resorting to cliche), that was my first exposure to her. Always loved her work.
From the Paris Review
By Mary Oliver
Issue no. 188 (Spring 2009)
Did you too see it, drifting, all night, on the black river?
Did you see it in the morning, rising into the silvery air—
an armful of white blossoms,
a perfect commotion of silk and linen as it leaned
into the bondage of its wings; a snowbank, a bank of lilies,
biting the air with its black beak …
What a beautifully written poem! I shall miss her work. Maggie