Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Tuesday Poem: "The Solitary" by Rainer Maria Rilke


No: my heart shall be a tower,
and I myself set at its highest rim:

where nothing else exists, once again pain

and the unsayable, once again world.


Still one thing alone in immensity,

growing dark then light again,

still one last face full of longing

thrust out into the unappeasable,


still one uttermost face made of stone

heeding only its own inner gravity,

while the distances that silently destroy it

drive it on to an ever deeper bliss.



by Rainer Maria Rilke
(translated from the German by Edward Snow)



Rilke certainly had the remarkable ability to be concise, compact, succinct and yet say so much with so few words. The essence of poetry, I suppose. The maximum impact with the minimum possible words.




For more information on the poet, Rainer Maria Rilke, see:


1 comment:

  1. I don't this this is correct. The Solitary is actually:

    The Solitary, by Rainer Maria Rilke

    As one who has sailed across an unknown sea,
    among this rooted folk I am alone;
    the full days on their tables are their own,
    to me the distant is reality.

    A new world reaches to my very eyes,
    a place perhaps unpeopled as the moon;
    their slightest feelings they must analyze,
    and all their words have got the common tune.

    The things I brought with me from far away,
    compared with theirs, look strangely not the same:
    in their great country they were living things,
    but here they hold their breath, as if for shame.

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