Rainer Maria Rilke

Rainer Maria Rilke Biography

René Karl Wilhelm Johann Josef Maria Rilke (German pronunciation: [ˈʁaɪnɐ maˈʁiːa ˈʁɪlkə]), better known as Rainer Maria Rilke, was a Bohemian-Austrian poet. He is considered one of the most significant poets in the German language. His haunting images focus on the difficulty of communion with the ineffable in an age of disbelief, solitude, and pro ...

Rainer Maria Rilke Quotes

11 November 2014

He reproduced himself with so much humble objectivity, with the unquestioning, matter of fact interest of a dog who sees himself in a mirror and thinks: there's another dog.

11 November 2014

The great renewal of the world will perhaps consist in this, that man and maid, freed of all false feelings and reluctances, will seek each other not as opposites, but as brother and sister, as neighbors, and will come together as human beings.

11 November 2014

Not since Moses has anyone seen a mountain so greatly.

11 November 2014

Just as the creative artist is not allowed to choose, neither is he permitted to turn his back on anything: a single refusal, and he is cast out of the state of grace and becomes sinful all the way through.

11 November 2014

Just as language has no longer anything in common with the thing it names, so the movements of most of the people who live in cities have lost their connexion with the earth; they hang, as it were, in the air, hover in all directions, and find no place where they can settle.

Rainer Maria Rilke Comments

Fabrizio Frosini 04 December 2015

The Song of the Dwarf Maybe my soul is straight and good, but she's got to lug my heart, my blood, which all hurts because it's crooked; its weight sends her staggering. She has no bed, she has no home, she merely hangs on my sharp bones, flapping her terrible wings. And my hands are completely shot, shriveled, worn: here, take a look at how they clammily, clumsily hop like rain-crazed toads. As for all the other stuff, it's all used up and sad and old— why doesn't God haul me out to the muck and let me drop. Is it because of my mug with its frowning mouth? So often I would itch to be luminous and free of fog but nothing would approach except big dogs. And the dogs got zilch. (Rainer Maria Rilke)

294 4 Reply
Mardia Parker 03 March 2010

Trying to confirm a poem or quote that is attributed to Rilke: 'In love, practice only this: letting each other go. Holding on comes easily, we don't need to learn it. Practice letting go.'

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Jay Warier 19 July 2009

'Again and Again' I reread after 25 years today. Kept me entranced again. Time has not taken any of Rilke's charm away.

35 23 Reply

Rainer Maria Rilke is my favorite poet. Upon hearing his poem, 'The Panther' I became breathless, emotional and was totally captivated by it. Every time I hear or reread that poem I am totally mesmerized by his skill.

31 21 Reply
Valerie Harms 14 April 2012

does anyone have those lines by Rilke where he is sitting in the rich darkness expectant about the light coming?

39 12 Reply
VPF 16 May 2021

Not crazy about this translation.

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david evans 08 December 2020

Looking for a Rilke poem which refers to nefertiti

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matthew schultz 26 September 2020

Am searching for a poem by Rilke about someone just having died, and being carried gently by hands afraid to drop the dead person, and the person's name and identity are all slipping away..

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Jennie 01 June 2020

Learning to " live the questions" comes from a passage in Rilke's Letters to a Young Poet.

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Gayle 13 May 2020

Looking for the poem abouit " learn to love the questions...someday you will live into the answers

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The Best Poem Of Rainer Maria Rilke

A Walk

My eyes already touch the sunny hill.
going far ahead of the road I have begun.
So we are grasped by what we cannot grasp;
it has inner light, even from a distance-

and charges us, even if we do not reach it,
into something else, which, hardly sensing it,
we already are; a gesture waves us on
answering our own wave...
but what we feel is the wind in our faces.


Translated by Robert Bly

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