January 20, 2011

God Speaks

I am, you anxious one.
Don't you sense me, ready to break
into being at your touch?
My murmurings surround you like shadowy wings.
Can't you see me standing before you
cloaked in stillness?
Hasn't my longing ripened in you
from the beginning
as fruit ripens on a branch?

I am the dream you are dreaming.
When you want to awaken, I am waiting.
I grow strong in the beauty you behold.
And with the silence of stars I enfold
your cities made by time.

The Book of Hours I, 19
Letters to a Young Poet


  1. Yet another wonderful pairing. The mystical and the erotic all rolled into one! Reminds me of those female Christian saints like Teresa of Avila. This is giving me such fresh insights into Rilke.

  2. "with the silence of stars I enfold
    your cities made by time" - beautiful.

  3. it's so intriguing visiting here and then visiting the rumi page. worlds apart describing the same world. the dance today between the spiritual and the earthly is often mirrored in rumi's writing. hmmm. steven

  4. Yes, Steven, I have the same reaction. As a follower of Ruth's Rumi Days blog, I, too, get a bubbly kick out of the synchronicities found between the Rilke and Rumi passages, the shudder and tingle of discovering connecting threads somehow laid across vast expanses of time and space. I think Ruth must do it with mirrors. Of course us readers of her main blog, synch-ro-ni-zing, come to expect such magic from her.

    Come to think of it, maybe we should put a sidebar link to the Rumi Days blog here. How about it, Ruth? I know you're eavesdropping here ...

  5. Such a calm voice. I laugh at man, all of our fitful questions, lifetimes of roiling and pulling hair, and god says, eternal and wise, only: i am.

    And even for me, someone who has a faith that is not in anything concrete, but rather in just this kind of stirring that god points to, My murmurings surround you like shadowy wings.
    And this is enough. It speaks to god like some kind of energy, an idea i can receive.



  6. I have to agree with Robert about this poem. It is "the mystical and the erotic all rolled into one." I also love the hint of Buddhism that I have sensed before in Rilke: "When you want to awaken, I am waiting."

  7. Exquisite pairing of words and image.

  8. I echo every comment posted before. This is profoundly moving verse and sculpture.

    Having come out of a belief structure where I believed that God is "Other," what Rilke does here to show that something divine within us awakens this god-mystery with a touch, resonates as true to my own understanding now. God within, and without. One.

    Yes, we can put Rumi on the sidebar, I agree that often since the start of this blog the two "R"s have been talking to each other.

  9. Each image of this poem is so powerfully stirring and evocative, to cite them would be to type out the entire poem again. I think we begin here to get Rilke's sense of sense of God as a culmination, a fulfilment, something we are moving toward, our destination, more than in the traditional Christian sense of creator, origin, the source. As such God is always present but ever just out out of reach, still ripening, continually gathering strength in the beauty we behold, ready to break into being, the dream in our dreaming ... absolutely tantalizing.

  10. touch the divine...inside

    this passage is so gorgeous

  11. It's almost not funny, but sometimes and especially lately, I do feel it is about to break.

    Some days so strong there is nothing I can do but laugh, but there is nothing funny about it.

  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

  13. God waits for us. Whether Buddhist, Catholic, Protestant, Jew - whatever. If we don't take our spirituality further than creator, origin, source - and don't internalize it by reaching out, letting it ripen in us and continue to grow with it - then we have not embraced God at all. We are just running around masquerading as a person of faith. This Rilke post was beautiful ... "Hasn't my longing ripened in you..." Just lovely.


"Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night."

~ Rainer Maria Rilke

Go ahead, bloom recklessly!