Rilke, Rainer Maria - 19 Fourth Elegy
Type of Spiritual Experience
Poem of the Soul, The Soul’s flight- 1854 :: Louis Janmot
A description of the experience
Duino Elegies – Rainer Maria Rilke [The Fourth Elegy]
Am I not right? You, to whom life tasted
so bitter, father, tasting mine,
that first clouded infusion of my necessities,
you kept on tasting, as I grew,
and preoccupied by the after-taste
of such a strange future, searched my misted gaze –
you, my father, who since you were dead, have often
been anxious within my innermost hopes,
and giving up calm, the kingdoms of calm
the dead own, for my bit of fate,
am I not right?
And you women, am I not right,
who would love me for that small beginning
of love, for you, that I always turned away from,
because the space of your faces changed,
as I loved, into cosmic space,
where you no longer existed......
When I feel like waiting in front of the puppet theatre, no,
rather gazing at it, so intently, that at last,
to balance my gaze, an Angel must come
and take part, dragging the puppets on high.
Angel and Doll: then there’s a play at last.
Then what we endlessly separate,
merely by being, comes together.
Then at last from our seasons here,
the orbit of all change emerges.
Over and above us, then, the Angel plays.