A Year With Rilke
Rainer Maria Rilke is one of the most beloved poets of the twentieth century. He has influenced generations of writers with his classic Letters to a Young Poet, and his reflections on the divine and our place in the universe...
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Rainer Maria Rilke is one of the most beloved poets of the twentieth century. He has influenced generations of writers with his classic Letters to a Young Poet, and his reflections on the divine and our place in the universe are strikingly profound.
Now readers can enjoy a daily selection of Rilke's work, in an entirely new translation by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy. A Year with Rilke includes selections from his poetry, prose, and intimate letters and journals. Amidst the bustle of daily life, Rilke can provide a welcome refuge as he reflects on such themes as impermanence, the beauty of creation, the voice of God, and the importance of solitude. Anita Barrows, a prize-winning poet and clinical psychologist, is the author of four books of poetry. She has received an NEA grant as well as the Quarterly Review of Literature's Contemporary Poetry Award. She has been a professional translator for more than thirty years. Joanna Macy, whose books include World as Lover, World as Self, is a scholar of systems theory and Buddhist thought. With Anita Barrows, she is translator of Rilke's Book of Hours.
More than any other modern German writer, Rainer Maria Rilke seems to match our romantic idea of what a poet should be, though, as with many writers, separating artistry from affectation is often difficult. Restless, sensitive, reverent, yet egotistical, Rilke often seems to hover in his poems like a sort of ethereal being. He was born in 1875 to a wealthy family in Prague. After a few years devoted to the study of art and literature, he spent most of his adult life wandering among the European capitals and devoting himself single-mindedly to poetry. His early poems reflect his interest in the visual and plastic arts, as he tries to lose himself in contemplation of objects such as an antique torso of Apollo.His later books of poetry, such as Duino Elegies (1923) and Sonnets to Orpheus (1923), on the contrary, focus intently on internal realms. The poetry of Rilke is noted, above all, for metaphysical and psychological nuances.