Rilke's Book of Hours

Rilke's Book of Hours Cover

Rilke's Book of Hours

Love Poems to God

By Rainer Maria Rilke; Anita Barrows (Translator); Joanna Macy (Translator)

Riverhead Books, Paperback, 9781594481567, 257pp.

Publication Date: November 1, 2005

Description
While visiting Russia in his twenties, Rainer Maria Rilke, one of the twentieth century's greatest poets, was moved by a spirituality he encountered there. Inspired, Rilke returned to Germany and put down on paper what he felt were spontaneously received prayers. Rilke's Book of Hours is the invigorating vision of spiritual practice for the secular world, and a work that seems remarkably prescient today, one hundred years after it was written.

Rilke's Book of Hours shares with the reader a new kind of intimacy with God, or the divine a reciprocal relationship between the divine and the ordinary in which God needs us as much as we need God. Rilke influenced generations of writers with his Letters to a Young Poet, and now Rilke's Book of Hours tells us that our role in the world is to love it and thereby love God into being. These fresh translations rendered by Joanna Macy, a mystic and spiritual teacher, and Anita Barrows, a skilled poet, capture Rilke's spirit as no one has done before.



About the Author
Rainer Maria Rilke (also Rainer Maria von Rilke) (4 December 1875 - 29 December 1926) is considered one of the German language's greatest 20th century poets. His haunting images focus on the difficulty of communion with the ineffable in an age of disbelief, solitude, and profound anxiety - themes that tend to position him as a transitional figure between the traditional and the modernist poets. He wrote in both verse and a highly lyrical prose. His two most famous verse sequences are the Sonnets to Orpheus and the Duino Elegies; his two most famous prose works are the Letters to a Young Poet and the semi-autobiographical The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge. He also wrote more than 400 poems in French, dedicated to his homeland of choice, the canton of Valais in Switzerland.

Anita Barrows, a prizewinning poet and clinical psychologist, is the author of four books of her own poetry and the recipient of an NEA grant as well as the Quarterly Review of Literature's Contemporary Poetry Award. She has been a professional translator for more than thirty years.

Joanna Macy, whose eight books include World as Lover, World as Self, is a scholar of systems theory and Buddhist thought who helps people find inner resources for dealing with global crises.