* an ongoing series of quotations – mostly from artists, to artists – that offers wisdom, inspiration, and advice for the sometimes lonely road we are on.
So inclination you see is not lacking, and yet in all probability I shall have to try right here to clamber in the dark and all alone over the crest of the year, so to speak, for disciplinary reasons. I shall not deserve it otherwise, that is: I have long wanted to be here all alone, strictly alone, to go into my cocoon, to pull myself together, in short, to live by my heart and nothing else. Now since day before yesterday I have really been here all alone inside the old walls – outside, the sea, outside, the Karst, outside, the rain, perhaps tomorrow the storm – now must appear what is within by way of counterweight to such great and fundamental things. So, if something quite unexpected does not come, it may be the right thing to say, to hold out, to hold still with a kind of curiosity toward oneself, don’t you think? That is how things stand, and if I stir now everything will shift again; and then hearts are labeled, like certain medicines: shake before taking; I have been continually shaken in these last years, but never taken, that is why it is better that I should quietly arrive at clarity and precipitation…
Jane Bannard Greene and M.D. Herter Norton, translators, Letters of Rainer Maria Rilke 1910 – 1926
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