December 4, 2009KR BlogKR

Short Takes (of Poetry)

The Doves (by Rainer Rilke)


That faint gray twilight on the swelling pout,

Like senses fading in the taper’s gleam.

That red, detected through the mountain steam

from a burnt offering to Love put out.


Contentment of accumulated gift

resting on hands extended openly;

Full vessel till the shoulder’s sudden lift,

Then glance and flexure and diversity.


The throat encircled with a little band

Where priestly fingers use to grasp and press,

And then the neck’s utter defenselessness

Peacefully smoothed as though by Nature’s hand.

Paris, April 1913