like the lyre


Depuis quand nous te jouons
avec nos yeux, fenêtre!
Comme la lyre, tu devais être
rendue aux constellations!

Instrument tendre et fort
de nos âmes successives,
arrache enfin de nos sorts
ta forme définitive!

Monte! Tourne de loin
autour de nous qui te fîmes.
Soyex, astres, les rimes
trouvées a nos bouts de destin!

Rainer Maria Rilke


Window, just how long have we
played you with our eyes!
Like the lyre, you should be
one of the constellations!

Tender and strong instrument
of our successive souls,
tear out your permanent
form at last from our fates!

Climb! And from afar
spin around us who created you.
Be the rhyme, O star,
found at the end of our end!

Translated by A. Poulin Jr.



  1. often, in one and the same moment, we seem to look out of and into a window ... perhaps out of the house and into ourselves, perhaps into a house and out of ourselves ...

    why not a constellation? what is closer to eternity? what intrigued face might peer through at us?

  2. yes... though startling at first (it certainly amazed me), this constellation-analogy does lead to so many interpretation. but it is not _any_ constellation, it is the lyre, and this image is an opening toward music and poetry, rhythm and rhyme...

    ps. yes, you are right, i hadn't noticed, "avec nos yeux", i will correct that :-)

  3. Tendre corps féminin ton plus bel apanage, Que tous ceux qui l'ont vu disent ... oh c'est beau je veux revoir cela .

  4. hello my beautiful friend.this image is soooooo beautiful and I thought of your music the other day when the light streamed in through the panels at my window that reminded me of a stringed instrument- the thin narrow bands of light and the light breeze and the musical strings moved and it was as if my soul plucked the strings....
    have a beautiful magical day.
    je t'embrasse.

  5. merci de tout coeur, Alain, pour ton passage ici!

    Madeleine, your enthusiastic words make me smile, thank you, gratefully. a lovely summer day for you as well!