Welcome to my blog where I will post commentary on issues ranging from fiction to public policy. Tucked away in the Idea Boxes are “how to” tips on a variety of projects that have become part of our family’s culture over the years. I hope you’ll find some useful ideas there. My blog will take you through the fantastic journey of writing and publishing fiction, as well as commentary on politics, cultural trends, book reviews and family.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Have You Read Any Rilke This Week?

In an age of disruption – the economic displacement caused by globalization, the social changes enabled by technology, the fractiousness of political polarization – it’s easy to lose your bearings.

Nothing grounds you like good poetry.

Many of the poems of Rainer Maria Rilke speak of surrender, of yielding to something bigger than yourself.

For all of us who are determined to control our lives through force of will, it’s useful to listen to what Rilke has to say about the swan – so awkward on land and so magnificent when, reluctantly letting go of solid ground, he gives in to what he was meant to be.

This laboring of ours with all that remains undone,
as if still bound to it,
is like the lumbering gait of the swan.

And then our dying—releasing ourselves
from the very ground on which we stood—
is like the way he hesitantly lowers himself

into the water.  It gently receives him,
and, gladly yielding, flows back beneath him,
as wave follows wave,
while he, now wholly serene and sure,
with regal composure,
allows himself to glide.

Thank you, Mary Maaga.

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