Posts Tagged ‘saved by a poem’


Give me your hand.
            —this epigraph, and all italic lines by Rainer Maria Rilke, from “Wild Love,” trans. by Joanna Macy

Tonight, again, I slip my hand into the hand of Rilke
and let him lead me into regions of beauty and terror.
Though I weep, though I tremble, he does not let go.
When I praise, he reminds me, No feeling is final.
There was a time, perhaps, when I did not believe
a poem could save my life. Now, I know.
If you could examine my cells, you would see
every single one of them has been tattooed
with his words. I use poems the way others
use a rope, a light, a crust of bread, a knife.
He whispers to me of impermanence.
Is it not the very fragrance of our days?
And yet, he seems to say, in the meantime
there is so much splendor to be made.

*Inspired also by correspondence with Luise Levy and John Mason

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: