Rilke’s timeless letters about poetry, sensitive observation, and the complicated workings of the human heart.
Born in 1875, the great German lyric poet Rainer Maria Rilke published his first collection of poems in 1898 and went on to become renowned for his delicate depiction of the workings of the human heart. Drawn by some sympathetic note in his poems, young people often wrote to Rilke with their problems and hopes. From 1903 to 1908 Rilke wrote a series of remarkable responses to a young, would-be poet on poetry and on surviving as a sensitive observer in a harsh world. Those letters, still a fresh source of inspiration and insight, are accompanied here by a chronicle of Rilke’s life that shows what he was experiencing in his own relationship to life and work when he wrote them.
A short, but very powerful read. I read this book as it was suggested on a podcast I listened to. I have been searching for books that I connect with to motivate myself to become a better person and lead a better life. This book was wonderful to read in one sitting and really process the ideas. I was amazed by the insight shared in the letters.
Here are some of my favorite passages
“For what would aloneness be, you ask yourself, if id id no possess greatness. There exists only one aloneness, and it is great, and it is not easy to bear.” I love this quote and is something I have been focusing on as I do my digital detox to find myself in moments of quiet.
When a truly great and unique spirit speaks, the lesser ones must be silent. Franz Kappus
I end with this quote because the voice of this book is greater than mine so I had to be quiet and listen. This book is worth your time to read and reflect. I have spent much time in reflection based on passages of this book.
If you are interested in this book you can check out the link to this book and others that I recommend on my Book Table page. I will only post ones that I think are worth your time.