Wednesday, February 1, 2012

"From darkness grows a gaudy revelation"

We share the cycle of flower, grapeleaf, fruit.
They don't speak just the language of the seasons.
From darkness grows a gaudy revelation
which is perhaps the object of some mute
envy from the dead, who strengthen the soil.
Can we conceive how they regard their part
in this? It long has been their way to lard
the loam through with their marrow. But this toil:

the question seems to be, whether this is
done freely. Does this, heavy work of slaves,
ensphered press up to us, their lords, as fruit?

Or are they the lords, who sleep beside the roots,
and grant us out of their affluent graves
this thing halfway between brute force and kisses?

From Sonnets to Orpheus by Rainer Maria Rilke, trans. by Howard A. Landman

Im Garten von SchloƟ Pretzfeld, Curt Herrmann, c.1903

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