November 9, 2011

Arriving at Rodin's Place in Meudon

 Rilke and Auguste Rodin
photographer unknown

He has received me, but that means nothing until I tell you how. Thus: the way a beloved place receives you on your return through many tangled trails. A spring which you sang and lived for day and night while you were gone. A grove over whose leafy canopies the birds cast shadows as they fly back and forth. A path along the roses that never ceased to lead you where you needed to go. And like a great dog did he receive me, recognizing me with peaceable, caressing eyes. And like an eastern god, moving only from within his noble calm, and with the smiles of a woman and the eager hands of a child. And he led me around to see the gardens and houses and studios.

Letter to Clara Westhoff Rilke
September 15, 1905


  1. I have been following this lovely blog for some time. But, today, just seeing the degree of metaphoricity in Rilke's letter to his wife, overwhelms me. I write about the creative process in exceptional poets, including Rilke, from a neuroscientific perspective. You might be interested in my blog: and website: and have almost completed a book project. Thank you so much for this daily contribution in words and images.

  2. Does anyone anywhere still write letters like this?!

    Carole, I visited your sites. Fascinating work you're doing.

  3. Hi, Carol, I agree with Maureen that your work and blog are fascinating and look forward to further explorations. As for your kind comments on this blog, many thanks, as Ruth and I always say, all gratitude should properly go to Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy, the editors and translators of the A Year With Rilke book. We urge everyone to click on the sidebar link and get a copy.


"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!