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4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  287 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Though as yet little known in English-speaking countries, Rainer Maria Rilke (1875-1926) is the finest German poet of this century and one of the greatest lyrical writers in the history of Western literature. A major figure in the modernist movement, with some affinities to Yeats, Rilke had a profound influence on other 20th century poets such as Pasternak and Akhmatova. H ...more
Taschenbuch, 324 pages
Published 1997 by Philipp Reclam jun., Stuttgart (first published September 7th 1986)
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Bee Halton
If you are interested in the artistic development of Rainer Maria Rilke then this book gives you a competent guide. The author explains a lot in prose but unfortunately there are not a lot of examples of the poets poems which is a shame.

I am not sure about the quality of the translations: As being German speaking I have been reading Rilke in German for many years. In German his words have a certain melody which I can not find in the translations. But I have also been translating poems from Germa
Rachel C.
This public domain volume is clearly only a very brief introduction to Rilke. It's especially hard to judge poetry from translations but I did like what I read.

Love Song

When my soul touches yours a great chord sings!
How shall I tune it then to other things?
O! That some spot in darkness could be found
That does not vibrate whene'er your depths sound.
But everything that touches you and me
Welds us as played strings sound one melody.
Where is the instrument whence the sounds flow?
And whose the master-
My favorit poet, together with Emily Dickinson. I am tempted to compare Rilkes poetry with Chopins music. Timeless, light, happy, romantic.
My book is full with post- its, marking poems that I like to re-read.
My favourite, about a monks relationship to God:
Luis A R Branco
Jun 20, 2015 Luis A R Branco rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lidos-em-2015
It is a marvelous poetry book. Rilke is doubtless a great poet and artist, deserving all our attention.
I really liked "Love Song."
Arthur Gonçalves
Oct 17, 2016 Arthur Gonçalves rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Quem fala de vitórias? Suportar é tudo".
Feb 12, 2014 Natalie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry, kindle, 2014
Just a few examples...

I scent the oncoming winds and must bend with them,
While the things beneath are not yet stirring,...
Then I feel the storm and am vibrant like the sea
And expand and withdraw into myself
And thrust myself forth and am alone in the great storm.


(This is one of my favorite poems)

They all have tired mouths
And luminous, illimitable souls;
And a longing (as if for sin)
Trembles at times through their dreams...



Who so loveth me
Apr 19, 2012 Michael rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: German students, poetry students, poets
Recommended to Michael by: serendipity
This is sort of an unusual item: a small book of German poetry with extensive editorial comments and notes in English. Depending on your reading ability in either language, this could be a good or a bad thing. I would say that it is probably most useful for reasonably advanced students of German with some interest in either Rilke or German poetry in general, who wish a basic introduction to his work.
Rilke is probably one of the least translatable of poets, so it is a good thing to see his work i
I downloaded this Project Gutenberg version to read "The Book of Hours" concurrently with Das Stunden-Buch, but it turns out that it containts only extracts from the latter, either freely interpreted or freely rearranged by Jessie Lamont. (At any rate, during my first superficial reading I struggled to trace the verses in the German responsible for the verses in the English.) When I realised that translation was much shorter, I stopped attempting to read them in parallel, and I think Jessie Lamo ...more
Seraphim V Molina
Tightly tailored the bulges show...

Tightly tailored the bulges show...

The translation of the poems is respectful of the rhythm and rhyme in which they were written in German, a fidelity in form that sometimes shatters the power and beauty of the lines...I find it equally disconcerting that the longer poems, are night broken into their conventional stanzas but presented as one long poem, e.g. Book of Hours. Maybe I'm just too inured to reading Rilke's poems in free-verse translations
Not quite what I expected. There were a few poems which I thought were wonderful, but in a few cases the translation seemed to be the problem - where words had been more or less created (although still quite understandable). For my petty brain it was too much, and while I certainly intend to buy a copy of Letters to a young poet, I will not be keeping this book. (alas).
Philip Dodd
Mar 02, 2016 Philip Dodd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The name Rainer Maria Rilke I have seen mentioned many times, so I thought I would read a book of his poems. I have no idea how well his poems have been translated into English in the book, Poems by Rainer Maria Rilke, but I enjoyed reading them, nonetheless. A collection of fine poems by a man who was clearly spiritually alive, I thought it to be. A good introduction to his works.
Jan 20, 2016 Susie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a new poet to me and this sampler is a wonderful introduction of his great poetry.

This translation really captures the lyrical pull of his poems for me. I love his poems with a more religious bend and will be reading more from him...
Mar 20, 2014 NobilisGughy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Entro gli armoniosi accordi di un ordine perfetto, trepidano parole come lampi di segreta inquietudine.
Louis F. Tyler Jr

I have a long way to go and perhaps will never there. I will go anyway. Wouldn't you go too?
May 17, 2013 Sarah rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My rating has nothing to do with the poems of Rilke, which are beautiful, and everything to do with the crappy edition and introduction.
Apr 29, 2016 Ulla rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry
now and then I read some of those I like and which are brilliant
but also a lot of hard stuff I don't really understand in it
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Rainer Maria Rilke is considered one of the German language's greatest 20th century poets.

His haunting images tend to focus on the difficulty of communion with the ineffable in an age of disbelief, solitude, and profound anxiety — themes that tend to position him as a transitional figure between the traditional and the modernist poets.

He wrote in both verse and a highly lyrical prose. His two mos
More about Rainer Maria Rilke...

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“Perform no miracles for me, But justify Thy laws to me Which, as the years pass by me. All soundlessly unfold.” 1 likes
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