Monday Meditations: ‘These Winds’ by Rainer Maria Rilke

Sun setting behind ruin columns in the city of Palmyra, Syria. Photo: Khaled al-Hariri, Reuters.

These winds – they come to gardens too.

There are gardens made by kings. For a time
they took pleasures there
with maidens who braided
their lovely laughter into garlands.

Like breeze through the leaves
was their whispering to each other.
They glistened in their silks and furs,
and their robes rustled over the gravel paths
like running water.

They are gone now. And now all gardens
follow after them,
subside in stillness through disenchanted spring times
and slowly burn in the flames of autumn.

Beyond the gardens still glimmers the palace –
bereft of festivals, paintings fading
in empty halls – silent, patient,
willing to let go.

~ From the Book of Hours by Rainer Maria Rilke (1875-1926). Translated into English by Anita Barrows and Joanna Mach.

Leave a Reply