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Rainer Maria Rilke

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

The Sonnets To Orpheus: XIX


Though the world keeps changing its form
as fast as a cloud, still
what is accomplished falls home
to the Primeval.

Over the change and the passing,
larger and freer,
soars your eternal song,
god with the lyre.

Never has grief been possesed,
never has love been learned,
and what removes us in death

is not revealed.
Only the song through the land
hallows and heals.


Translated by Stephen Mitchell

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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