Rilke, Sonnette an Orpheus, Erster Teil, VIII

Only in the space of praise may the lament
go, the nymph of weeping source,
watching over our rainfall
that it be clear even on the face

which upholds the gates and the altars. —
See, around her still shoulders breaks
the feeling that she would be the youngest
among the siblings in the mind.

Jubilance knows, and longing is to confess–
only the lament still learns; with girl’s hands
she numbers nightlong the ancient evil.

But suddenly, crooked and unskilled,
she bears up a constellation of our voice
into the sky, unclouded by her breath.


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