THE SONNETS TO ORPHEUS by Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by Robert Temple
BOOK IINTRODUCTIONTHE SONNETSRAINER MARIA RILKEROBERT TEMPLE'S WEBSITE
But what offering can I consecrate to you, oh Master? -
You, who have bestowed hearing upon all creatures?
- My memory of one spring day,
In the evening, in Russia, - a stallion ...

Running alone from the hamlet across to us
The pale horse, a tethering-peg dangling from his fetlock,
To spend a night solitary in the meadow;
How he shook his tangled mane,

Tossed in time to his haughty step,
Despite his clumsily impeded gallop.
How the fountains leapt up of his chargerís blood!

He intuited the vastnesses and, oh from that
He sang! He heard! - yes, your cycle of legends
Was embraced within him.

His image: that I offer.


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