Letters to a Young Poet

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The ten letters collected here are arguably the most famous and beloved letters of our century. Written when Rainer Maria Rilke was himself still a young man with most of his greatest work before him, they are addressed to a student who had sent Rilke some of his work, asking for advice about becoming a writer. The two never met, but over a period of several years Rilke wrote him these ten letters, which have been enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of readers for what Stephen Mitchell calls the "vibrant and deeply felt experience of life" that informs them.
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About the author

Rainer Marie Rilke, the great Austro-German poet, was the author of many works including Duino Elegies and Sonnets to Orpheus.

Stephen Mitchell's translations include Ahead of All Parting: The Selected Poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke, The Book of Job, Tao Te Ching, and, most recently, Bhagavad-Gita. He lives in California.
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4.7
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Additional Information

Publisher
Vintage
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Published on
Feb 16, 2011
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Pages
128
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ISBN
9780307787231
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Language
English
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Genres
Literary Collections / Letters
Literary Collections / Russian & Former Soviet Union
Literary Criticism / European / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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From the writer of the classic Letters to a Young Poet, reflections on grief and loss, collected and published here in one volume for the first time.

“A great poet’s reflections on our greatest mystery.”—Billy Collins

“A treasure . . . The solace Rilke offers is uncommon, uplifting and necessary.”––The Guardian

Gleaned from Rainer Maria Rilke’s voluminous, never-before-translated letters to bereaved friends and acquaintances, The Dark Interval is a profound vision of the mourning process and a meditation on death’s place in our lives. Following the format of Letters to a Young Poet, this book arranges Rilke’s letters into an uninterrupted sequence, showcasing the full range of the great author’s thoughts on death and dying, as well as his sensitive and moving expressions of consolation and condolence.

Presented with care and authority by master translator Ulrich Baer, The Dark Interval is a literary treasure, an indispensable resource for anyone searching for solace, comfort, and meaning in a time of grief.

Praise for The Dark Interval

“Even though each of these letters of condolence is personalized with intimate detail, together they hammer home Rilke’s remarkable truth about the death of another: that the pain of it can force us into a ‘deeper . . . level of life’ and render us more ‘vibrant.’ Here we have a great poet’s reflections on our greatest mystery.”—Billy Collins

“As we live our lives, it is possible to feel not sadness or melancholy but a rush of power as the life of others passes into us. This rhapsodic volume teaches us that death is not a negation but a deepening experience in the onslaught of existence. What a wise and victorious book!”—Henri Cole
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