Paintings for "Sonnets to Orpheus" by Rainer Maria Rilke.
Extract from "Sonnets to Orpheus" by Rainer Maria Rilke
(Translated by Don Paterson)
Be ahead of all departure; learn to act
as if, like the last winter, it was all over.
For among winters, one is so exact
that wintering it, your heart will last forever.
Die, die through Eurydice - that you might pass
into the pure accord, praising the more, singing
the more; amongst the waning, be the glass
that shudders in the sound of its own ringing.
Be; and at the same time know the state
of non-being, the boundless inner sky,
that this time you might fully honour it.
Take all of nature, its one vast aggregate -
jubilantly multiply it by
the nothing of yourself, and clear the slate.
(Pidacor Book of Funeral Poems, 2012. Ed. Don Paterson, Picador: New York)