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Home / Poetry R. M. Rilke / Poetry / duino



Upon rereading Rilke’s Elegies

Not just the intimate immensities
of Rilke’s symbols, colours, images,
his landscapes ripe with nuanced consciousness
seduce us -- but his pregnant musicalities,

his crystal rhythms echoing through time and space,
resounding aural clusters, choirs and hymns,
nostalgic memories of praise and grace,
essential truths that vibrate through our limbs.

A gallant angel guards as Lares over us,
chants ancient litanies of luck and loss,
tempts us beyond our primal drive
to fiery joie de vivre, zeal to strive.

Sub specie aeternitatis -- Being is.
Our restless present, past and future merge
into a living snapshot, cosmic kiss,
embracing all, renewing every urge.

The hic et nunc are always ours:  We know
we own the moment as we go:
no dream nor shadow, vital anarchies
of visible and deep invisible realities.

What seems to us ephemeral
in timeless time becomes eternal,
every moment precious in fragility,
each flower fragrant in its anonymity.

We too are one, yet bound to every generation
in communion with continuing creation,
as all living things engender progeny
and seasons sing of continuity.

© Alfred de Zayas, Duino, 3 June 2015



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