In April | Rainer Maria Rilke
Here’s a small poem packed with beauty and hope. An invitation to pay attention to what’s happening right before our eyes. It’s Spring here in the USA. Time for reminders of new life in the midst of huge loss, suffering and anguish.
As most of you know, we’re in for a tough two weeks or more. It’s easy to get drawn into the drama around COVID-19. Easy, and not very uplifting.
Each morning I receive a poem in my mailbox. Here’s today’s poem, with a bit of hope for each of us.
In April, by Rainer Maria Rilke
Again the woods are odorous, the lark
Lifts on upsoaring wings the heaven gray
That hung above the tree-tops, veiled and dark,
Where branches bare disclosed the empty day.
After long rainy afternoons an hour
Comes with its shafts of golden light and flings
Them at the windows in a radiant shower,
And rain drops beat the panes like timorous wings.
Then all is still. The stones are crooned to sleep
By the soft sound of rain that slowly dies;
And cradled in the branches, hidden deep
In each bright bud, a slumbering silence lies.
This poem is in the public domain.
Published in Poem-a-Day on April 5, 2020, by the Academy of American Poets.
Praying you’ll experience a calm heart this week, and enjoy the beginning of Spring (or Fall). I fell off the wagon a bit this past week. Too much attention to news outlets, and not enough to nature and my own beautiful, grown-up self.
© Elouise Renich Fraser, 5 April 2020
Photo found at worldbirdphotos.com
Dear Elouise, this is just what I needed at this very moment. It is a day full of (technologically present) people, planning, praying and hoping, after a somewhat shortened night. The picture of the little bird alone would have lifted my spirits, but Rilke’s poem, and your commentary, took it over the top for me.
Thank you, thank you!
From over here in the quiet building that usually houses the lively congregation…
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Oh, Debbie, you’re welcome! I can’t even begin to imagine the pressure you’re under. I’m so happy this Rilke poem and the photo spoke to your weariness. I thought the lark was astonishingly beautiful, elegant and ready to fly!
Elouise, That perfectly goes with the sermon I am working on. I find calm in nature, my neighbor’s silly dog chasing his tail, and preparing food for dinner with a recipe I’ve never used before. I am well and waiting for this to be over so that I may have my kidney transplant.. Glad you are well and writing.
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Hi, Lee. Your calm places sound wonderful. I hope all goes well with your kidney transplant! 😊