The sky puts on the dark blue gown

held up for it by the avenue of limes;

you watch: the landscape divides
one half heavenward, the other half down;

leaving you quite distinct from either side:

not like the houses, motionless and dark,

nor aspiring for infinity like the part

that becomes a star each night and climbs


leaving you to distinguish in the quiet

how vast is your life is and alone,

how both determined and definite

your heart is at once both star and stone.

Translated by Peter Jukes from ‘Abend’ by Rainer Maria Rilke


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