Rainer Maria Rilke: “The Lute”

The Lute

I am the lute. When you describe what you see
in my body — the way its curved lines rise —
speak as you would about fruit on a tree,
ripened and full. Overemphasize

the darkness in me.
It was her darkness first, hidden
between her legs. Her hair could be
like a sun-filled hall. Sometimes, unbidden,

a sound I made reflected on her face,
and in her throat, a song would stir,
as I pressed myself to her most soft place
and what was within me entered into her.

Rainer Maria Rilke

Translated from German by Paul Weinfield, © 2015

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