Sunday, June 30, 2013

Feast of Rilke

Happy almost first of July. I wanted to share some of my recent inspiration from Rainer Maria Rilke, one of my go-to poets when in need of a serious inspiration jolt. These poems are taken from a particularly potent volume of his poetry entitled Rilke's Book of Hours [love poems to God]. Many of the poems in this book can satisfy me like food, and comfort me in a way that little else can. I've included four poems in this post (and could have easily added many more). Hope they satisfy you, too!
Happy Summer!


Wer seines Lebns viele Widersinne

She who reconciles the ill-matched threads
of her life, and weaves them gratefully
into a single cloth -
it's she who drives the loudmouths from the hall
and clears it for a different celebration

where the one guest is you.
In the softness of evening
it's you she receives.

You are the partner of her loneliness,
the unspeaking center of her monologues.
With each discourse you encompass more
and she stretches beyond what limits her,
to hold you.

Du siehst, ich will viel

You see, I want a lot.
Maybe I want it all:
the darkness of each endless fall,
the shimmering light of each ascent.

So many are alive who don't seem to care.
Casual, easy, they move in the world
as though untouched.

But you take pleasure in the faces
of those who know they thirst.
You cherish those
who grip you for survival.

You are not dead yet, it's not too late
to open your depths by plunging into them
and drink in the life
that reveals itself quietly there.

Ich komme aus meinen Schwingen heim

I come home from the soaring
in which I lost myself.
I was song, and the refrain which is God
is still ringing in my ears.

Now I am still
and plain:
no more words.

To the others I was like a wind:
I made them shake.
I'd gone very far, as far as the angels,
and high, where light thins into nothing,

But deep in the darkness is God.


Du, gestern Knabe, dem die Wirrnis kam

You, yesterday's boy,
to whom confusion came:
Listen, lest you forget who you are.

It was not pleasure you fell into. It was joy.
You were called to be bridegroom,
though the bride coming toward you is your shame.

What chose you is the great desire.
Now all flesh bares itself to you.

On pious images pale cheeks
blush with strange fire.
Your senses uncoil like snakes
awakened by the beat of the tambourine.

Then suddenly your left all alone
with your body that can't love you
and your will that can't save you.

But now, like a whispering in dark streets,
rumors of God run through your dark blood.


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

poem for a kindred...

The Intervening

You carry the song
that grace sings
inside of you,
and all who cross your path
can pick up a strain
of her melody.

Truth shows its gentleness
in your eyes,
and in your words,
carefully and lovingly chosen,
like a child's bouquet.

These things don't fade
over the miles,
or over the years -
this essence of who you are,
who you have become,
or who you are yet to be.

Know this -
that Wisdom will not hide her face
from you,
She is your constant companion,
as you navigate
this treacherous terrain
with it's unspeakable rending.

Because a woman like you,
who bears the beauty of life
like a solitary
bright torch,
will always endure.

A woman like you,
at the end of it all,
will stand.

And when you do,
you will look down,
to see this present suffering
re-create itself
before your very eyes.

You will know what it means
to sleep in deep peace,
and to greet the morning

with hope.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

this elegy

In the mid-afternoon
the invisible poems crawl
up and down the walls,
waiting. whispering.
I ignore them,
concentrating on the sound the rain is making
as it hits the balcony railing.

If I give in to them
I hope for a raucous celebration of words,
I pray the pen will give evidence of some uncontainable joy.
But I know better.
Not now. Not yet.

Because I spied them on the walls.
Because I know what they contain,

The only thing that comes out of me,
the only thing that makes sense to me -
is this elegy.

"Transformation has it's price"
Is the price too high?
40 days of rain and fire,
disconnected fragments of truth,
the taste of impending loss
like blood
on my tongue.

I still cling to these patterns the light is making,
like watching fire throwers at night.

On the darkest days
I'll retrace all the invisible imprints with my hands
long after they've disappeared.

Saturday, June 01, 2013

Feel it all

I heard this song today...and realized it is the inaugural song of this summer. Feist comes through for me yet again. Sometimes, like it or not, I feel it all. Might as well embrace it.
Happy June. 1st

 I feel it all, I feel it all, I feel it all, I feel it all
The wings are wide, the wings are wide
Wild card inside, wild card inside
Ooh, I'll be the one who'll break my heart
I'll be the one to hold the gun
I know more than I knew before
I  know more than I knew before
I didn't rest, I didn't stop
Did we fight or did we talk?
Ooh, I'll be the one who'll break my heart
I'll be the one to hold the gun
I love you more, I love you more
I don't know what I knew before
But now I know I wanna win the war
No one likes to take a test
Sometimes you know more is less
Put your weight against the door
Kick drum on the basement floor
Stranded in the fog of words
Loved him like the winter bird
On my head the water pours
Gulf stream through the open door
Fly away, fly away to what you wanna make
I feel it all, I feel it all,
I feel it all, I feel it all
The wings are wide, the wings are wide
Wild card inside, wild card inside
Ooh, I'll be the one to break my heart
I'll be the one who'll break my heart
I'll be the one who'll break my heart
I'll end it, though you started it
The truth lies
The truth lied
No one knows
And lies divide
Lies divide