Saturday, 29 July 2017

The Gazelle - Rainer Maria Rilke

Enchanted one: how can one harmonize
Two chosen words so as to reach the rhyme
Which comes and goes in you, as by a sign.
From out your forehead leaf and lyre arise,

All yours in metaphor already goes
Through songs of love whose phrases, soft as rose
Petals, descend upon the eyes of those
Who read no more because their eyelids close
That they may see you: carried forth as if
Each slim leg were a barrel charged with bounding,
Just kept from discharge while the neck is stiff

With hearkening: as when a bather, rounding
Upon a woodland noise, stops in surprise,
The forest pool still in her backturned eyes.

Rainer Maria Rilke (1875 – 1926) Germany (born Prague)
Translated by Walter Arndt
Source: The Best of Rilke: 72 Form-true Verse Translations with Facing Originals by Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by Walter Arndt, p.71

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