Thursday, June 3, 2010

thoughts on thoughts

I see my blog hits are up. It must be because of the CityBeat article. Pretty cool. Thank you Seth Combs, I'm pretty thrilled. I hope you enjoy your new life as a, uh, farmer.

This blog is where I deposit thoughts. Sometimes on writing, sometimes on the process or just randomness. The post below this has a couple of videos of me reading, including "Birds," the story the article mentioned.

Last night I lost myself in Rilke's Duino Elegies. There is no collection of poetry I turn to more than this one. The copy I was reading last night is the Edward Snow translation, my favorite.

For beauty is nothing
but the beginning of terror, which we can just barely endure,
and we stand in awe of it as cooly disdains to destroy us.

-the First Elegy

That line does something to my heart whenever I read it. The whole First Elegy kills me. I can't read it without wanting to fly out my window. I originally read the Duino Elegies in Switzerland one cold winter. Rilke finished the Elegies in Switzerland, though he started them in Italy. Winter was cold, I was isolated and often in dark places. and Rilke soothed. I look to see the passages I underlined then and I wouldn't choose the same ones now. It makes me wonder if I should date when I read something so that I can see what was resonating at that point in my life.

Last night I noticed something I may have noticed before and forgotten. My slowly dying novel mirrors the poems. One of my main characters is a poet who writes a collection of poems addressing another character "Angel." Rilke addresses his poems to "Angel" as well, though his Angel is a celestial being, while the one in my book is flesh and bones. *sigh* I miss my novel but working on it hurts.

Oh how strangely the drinker slips from the sacrament.
-First Elegy
Rilke



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