Reading Rilke

Hello, today, I have been reading Rilke, loving the words and wondering what I miss in translation. I keep coming back to this poem, so thought I’d share it here:

Days in Autumn by Rainer Maria Rilke

There’s a poetry film here, with a slightly different translation

Rilke Poetry Film

This seasonal poem is one I have known and loved for some time.  The first seven lines celebrate the fullness of the time, in rural elegy, descending to the more stripped, brusque absence of a more urban landscape in absence and separation are more real than ever before.

The notion of God disappears in this poem, somewhere after the first seven lines. The profuse growing time, leads to the desolate pavements and a lyric flowering of loss.  The fruits ripen late and dry before separating from their stems, before the more ominous tone of the poem and season carry us through to its conclusion.

Maybe this is what turning to the dark half of the year is, the gathering in, the hurry to harvest, the bravery to let things go or leave them as they are. Maybe we all read the world differently and take different meanings from symbols and signs, depending on how are shaped by, and how we shape language.

My own thoughts on autumn are below.



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