Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Excerpt from a Letter to... an Old Poet?

"Read as little as possible of literary criticism - such things are either partisan opinions, which have become petrified and meaningless, hardened and empty of life, or else they are just clever word-games, in which one view wins today, and tomorrow the opposite view. Works of art are of an infinite solitude, and no means of approach is so useless as criticism. ... - Always trust yourself and your own feeling, as opposed to argumentations, discussions, or introductions of that sort; if it turns out that you are wrong, then the natural growth of your inner life will eventually guide you to other insights. Allow your judgments their own silent, undisturbed development, which, like all progress, must come from deep within and cannot be forced or hastened. Everything is gestation and then birthing. To let each impression and each embryo of a feeling come to completion, entirely in itself, in the dark, in the unsayable, the unconscious, beyond the reach of one's own understanding, and with deep humility and patience to wait for the hour when a new clarity is born: this alone is what it means to live as an artist: in understanding as in creating. "

---------------------------------------------------------Ranier Maria Rilke


Peter said...

Thanks for this.
Just what I was needing to read at this moment!

vegetablej said...

"Everything is gestation and then birthing."

A great way to say "be patient", isn't it? Easier to hear and believe than to live, though. :)

Nick said...