Poems from the Book of Hours (Paperback)
Normally we can get this book to the store for you in a day or two. During the seasonal rush, this might not be possible.
One of the most powerful poetry collections of the twentieth century, now in a beautiful new edition
Although The Book of Hours is the work of Rilke’s youth, it contains the germ of his mature convictions. Written as spontaneously received prayers, these poems celebrate a God who is not the Creator of the Universe but rather humanity itself and, above all, that most intensely conscious part of humanity, the artist. Babette Deutsch’s classic translations—born from “the pure desire to sing what the poet sang” (Ursula K. Le Guin)—capture the rich harmony and suggestive imagery of the originals, transporting the reader to new heights of inspiration and musicality.
About the Author
Rainer Maria Rilke (1875–1926), the author of Sonnets to Orpheus and Letters to a Young Poet, was one of the greatest poets of the German language.
Babette Deutsch (1859–1982) was a poet, critic, and novelist, as well as a translator.
If Rilke cut himself shaving, he would bleed poetry.
— Stephen Spender - The New York Review of Books
Rilke remade the sturdy sonnet, recast the sonorous song. He quickened the
German language itself.
— Rika Lesser - The Nation
Poets in English continue to line up for the inevitable failure of translating
Rilke’s short lyrics. The best translations I have seen are from Babette
— Clive James