Rainer Maria Rilke: “The Village’s Last House” (from The Book of Hours)

The Village’s Last House (from The Book of Hours)

The village’s last house stands alone and stark,
as if in this world it were the last to remain.
The road the little village can’t contain
stretches out slowly into the dark.

What we call a village is just a place of transition
between the two expanses of trust and suspicion,
a bridge of houses through which life’s path runs through.

And those who leave it lose all sense of position.
Long must they wander, and perhaps, perish too.

Rainer Maria Rilke

Translated from German by Paul Weinfield, © 2014
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