Inside every oyster, there's a purl...

Friday, February 02, 2007

Not a Poem, but...

In honor of Silent Poetry Day, this is not a poem, but since it comes from Rilke's "Letter to a Young Poet," I'm sharing it. Our dear friend read this at our wedding, and it still makes me cry. Especially the last paragraph, which just gives me goosebumps. Hope it moves you as well.

Marriage is in many ways a simplification of life, and it naturally combines the strengths and weaknesses of two young people so that, together, they seem to reach farther into the future than they did before. A good marriage is that in which each appoints the other guardian of his solitude, and shows him this confidence, the greatest in his power to bestow. Above all, marriage is a new task and a new seriousness, a new demand on the strength and generosity of each partner.

For one human being to love another human being: that is perhaps the most difficult task that has been entrusted to us, the ultimate task, the final test and proof, the work for which all other work is merely preparation.

Loving does not at first mean merging, surrendering, and uniting with another person -- it is a high inducement for the individual to ripen, to become something in himself, to become world, to become world in himself for the sake of another person; it is a great, demanding claim on him, something that chooses him and calls him to vast distance.

Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distances exist, a marvelous living side by side can grow up, if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which makes it possible for each to see the other whole and before an immense sky.

-Letters to a Young Poet
Rainer Maria Rilke


Blogger mames said...

beautiful prose. i love being married more than any other state, although pregnancy rivals it in some ways. we have been together since young, but married for only three of those eleven...and it really invigorated us, remade us. thanks for the comment about twins and congrats to you and your two boys. smiles.

12:20 PM  

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