Rainer Maria Rilke

(4 December 1875 – 29 December 1926 / Prague / Czech Republic)

Death - Poem by Rainer Maria Rilke

Come thou, thou last one, whom I recognize,
unbearable pain throughout this body's fabric:
as I in my spirit burned, see, I now burn in thee:
the wood that long resisted the advancing flames
which thou kept flaring, I now am nourishinig
and burn in thee.

My gentle and mild being through thy ruthless fury
has turned into a raging hell that is not from here.
Quite pure, quite free of future planning, I mounted
the tangled funeral pyre built for my suffering,
so sure of nothing more to buy for future needs,
while in my heart the stored reserves kept silent.

Is it still I, who there past all recognition burn?
Memories I do not seize and bring inside.
O life! O living! O to be outside!
And I in flames. And no one here who knows me.


Comments about Death by Rainer Maria Rilke

  • (11/16/2016 10:06:00 PM)


    Awesome and very bold write. Thanks for sharing it here. (Report) Reply

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  • (11/16/2016 9:55:00 PM)


    mounted the tangled funeral pyre built for suffering
    A bold conceptualization that is realistic too. Thanks for sharing it here.
    (Report) Reply

  • Thabani Khumalo (6/16/2015 8:52:00 AM)


    I have a vision to write like this, only if god would bless me enough to.d (Report) Reply

    Rod Mendieta Rod Mendieta (12/31/2016 12:22:00 PM)

    Don't give up your vision, Thabani. I think one starts by cherishing beautiful poems like this one. Lock it inside your heart and mind, revisit its lines every now and then, and it will inspire you.

Read all 4 comments »



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Read poems about / on: funeral, future, pain, death, heart, life, memory



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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