I am, O Anxious One.

A sketch from my notebook I entitled "grief grows fruit"

I have always been a fan of Rainer Maria Rilke, and have regularly assigned his book, Letters to a Young Poet, in my mixed media class to help the students think outside of box.

Here is a poem from his “Book of Hours”- enjoy.

I am, O Anxious One.  Don’t you hear my voice
surging forth with all my earthly feelings?
They yearn so high that they have sprouted wings
and whitely fly in circles around your face.
My soul, dressed in silence, rises up
and stands alone before you:  can’t you see?
Don’t you know that my prayer is growing ripe
upon your vision, as upon a tree?

If you are the dreamer, I am what you dream.
But when you want to wake, I am your wish,
and I grow strong with all magnificence
and turn myself into a star’s vast silence
above the strange and distant city, Time.

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About abiggerworldyet

Visual Artist Brother Sojourner College Professor Christ follower
This entry was posted in Men's Work and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to I am, O Anxious One.

  1. slpmartin says:

    Although I always loved Rilke, I haven’t read hiim for several years…thanks for reminding me. Now, I just need to find that book.

  2. Megan says:

    I am searching for different interpretations of this poem. As each person reads something different into words I would like to ask you who you think the I and the you is in this poem. God and man?

    • abiggerworldyet says:

      You know, I think what I love about good poetry and good art is that often I think the artist or poet leaves that up to the reader or viewer. I’m wondering if the “I am” is “Time” as the last stanza says. Also the speaker has a soul, and prays- who would God pray to? I’d vote for time, as we dream for what we want- in time, and when we wake we wake our wish or hope is what can only “grow ripe” with time. That’s my thought.

  3. lomagirl says:

    This image reminds me of a piece by Kimberly Alexander. This is a link to her, but not to the specific piece. Her work is fascinating, and draws from her students and her experiences as a teacher. The piece I’m thinking of imagines a teacher as a tree bearing fruit.
    http://imagejournal.org/page/artist-of-the-month/kim-alexander

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