OTHER VOICES – MUST I WRITE ? RAINIER MARA RILKE

I’ve had this in my files for sometime, meaning to publish it at some point, but it kind of got lost. In looking for something else, I stumbled across it this hour – Thankfully! Obviously I’ve read it before and was impressed with it – otherwise I wouldn’t have saved it.

In a way that previous readings did not do it – reading this now – was so Compelling, and Resonant to me, that it totally captured – literally – my Writer’s Mind, Heart and Soul.

And now, his voice:

“Go into yourself.
Find out the reason that commands you to write;
See whether it has spread its roots
Into the very depths of your heart;
Confess to yourself whether you would have to die
If you were forbidden to write.

This most of all: Ask yourself in the most silent hour of your night:
Must I write? Dig into yourself for a deep answer.
And if this answer rings out in assent,
If you meet this solemn question
With a strong, simple “I must,”
Then build your life in accordance with this necessity;

Your whole life,
Even into its humblest and most indifferent hour,
Must become a sign and witness to this impulse.
Then come close to Nature.
Then, as if no one had ever tried before,
Try to say what you see and feel and love and lose…

Describe your sorrows and desires, the thoughts that pass through your mind
And your belief in some kind of beauty –
Describe all these with heartfelt, silent, humble sincerity and,
When you express yourself, use the things around you,
The images from your dreams,
And the objects that you remember.

If your everyday life seems poor,
Don’t blame it; blame yourself;
Admit to yourself that you are not enough of a Poet
To call forth its riches;
Because for the Creator there is not poverty
And no poor, indifferent place.

And even if you found yourself in some prison,
Whose walls let in none of the world’s sounds –
Wouldn’t you still have your Childhood,
That Jewel beyond all price,
That treasure house of memories?

Turn your attentions to it.
Try to raise up the sunken feelings of this enormous past;
Your personality will grow stronger,
Your solitude will expand
And become a place where you can live in the twilight,
Where the noise of other people passes by, far in the distance.

And if out of this turning-within,
out of this immersion in your own world, poems come,
Then you will not think of asking anyone
Whether they are good or not.

Nor will you try to interest magazines in these works:
For you will see them as your dear natural possession,
A piece of your life, a voice from it.
A work of art is good if it has arisen out of necessity.
That is the only way one can judge it.”

Rainer Maria Rilke

To answer his question: I must!

Advertisements

OTHER VOICES – ARTURO TOSCANINI

Arturo Toscanini was not only one of the Greatest Orchestral Symphonic and Opera Conductors of the 20th Century – but also a Human Being who stood against the totalitarian ideologies of Adolph Hitler and Benito Mussolini. He refused each of their requests to perform in their respective Countries, with possible tragic consequences. But as he once said, “It is my duty to fight for the cause of artists persecuted by Nazis”.

The remarkable part of the musical Acclaim that came his way was from Fellow Conductors, Musicians and Opera Singers who performed under his leadership, and Music Critics.
“Incomparable”, “Greatest of Conductors” and “Genius” were only a few of the words of praise from many members of all of those groups.

What Toscanini accomplishes, is the total Clarity of his performances, to the extent that what he brings out to the ear of the listener are subtle musical segments, and instrumental sections, previously buried within the performances of lesser Conductors – and the strict adherence, almost bordering on the fanatical – of recreating the Musical Purity and Joy of every Composer’s intent.

As for his Quotes I give you two.
First, of the personal Soul of the man:

“When I look back at the years of my adolescence, I don’t remember a day without sunshine, because the sunshine was in my soul.”

And the second, the Soul of the Human Spirit:

“Liberty, in my opinion, is the only orthodoxy within the limits of which Art may express itself and flourish freely – Liberty, that is the best of all things in the life of man, if it is all one with Wisdom and Virtue.

MY SEA AND SOUL

Oh deep and wondrous waters
Stretched beyond what eye can see
It’s not the mysteries of your depths
That gives thy meaning up to me

I see white sails upon thy surface
And many ships and boats afloat
And close by me white crashing foam
Surrounds me like some giant moat

But your beauty and your meaning
In my soul in which you breed
Is that you are the water of my creation
In which to me you’ve given seed

I dip into your wetness
Which cleanses me for sure
Your briny goodness reaches into
And makes my free soul so pure

OTHER VOICES – ON ANGER

I, as a Child, Teenager, and Adult, experienced Anger….sometimes extreme Anger.
Unfortunately, for me, the source of it was my own Father. But this little Blog is not about my history with him. That is a long story saved for another day.

I write that only to show that, sadly and painfully, I have many years of experiences with it. And that I knows Anger when I hears it!

Frederick Buechner in his book “Wishful Thinking”, writes about “Anger”. My first thought upon reading it was that this had to be my favorite definition of Anger. But on reflection, I don’t know if one can have a favorite definition of “Anger”. After all, it is hardly an emotion one has anything “favorite” to think or feel about. It would be like having a favorite definition of Abuse, or Murder!

Lets just say that my initial reading of it was not only one of the intellect, but also a very deeply felt visceral and appreciative response to it.

I am not a Religious Man, as I see Mr. Buechner is. There are for sure many things we would disagree on. But I have learned when a voice speaks the Truth, (Obviously as I see it) – regardless of the source – embrace it as if it is your very own thought. Otherwise, not only is your Mind very limited, but sadly so are your Heart and Human Soul.

And lastly, Yes, there is appropriate Anger, that which is in response to Irrational, Despicable, Abusive, Immoral behavior. But this is not what Mr. Buechner wrote, nor what I read into it.

Mr. Buechner speaks:

“Of the Seven Deadly Sins,
Anger is possibly the most fun.
To lick your wounds,
To smack your lips
Over grievances long past

To roll over your tongue
The prospect of bitter confrontations still to come,
To savor to the last toothsome morsel
Both the pain you are given
And the pain you are giving back

In many ways it is a feast fit for a king.
The chief drawback is
That what you are wolfing down is yourself.
The skeleton at the feast is you.”

HAVE THEY NOT DREAMED

Have I not heard
So many times
The dim and dismal whispers
Of small and frightened people
Echoing the refrains
Of ranting Demagogues
How small and insignificant
We Humans be

Have they not read nor heard
Those words and sounds that Titans wrote,
That vibrate through the Centuries.
Whether read on the written page
Or heard in the Concert Hall
They be Beauteous Chords,
That gives the Lie
To those immoral Falsehoods

Have they not Dreamed
As many have Dreamed
Not of Worlds to Conquer,
But of Worlds to Discover
Not of Individuals to Control
But of Individuals to Discover
Individuals who own Minds, Hearts and Souls
Of Substance, Value, Love,
Passion and Compassion

For our Greatness lies
Not in our Bodily size
It lies in the depth
And scope of our Imaginations
In the Fearlessness of our Hearts
And in the Clarity, Beauty
And Grandeur of our Thoughts
All of which expands the Human Spirit
To the edges of Universes –
Both known and unknown.

OTHER VOICES II – “LOVE YOUR SOLITUDE”

“Therefore, dear Sir, love your solitude
And try to sing out with the pain it causes you.
For those who are near you are far away, you write,
And this shows that the space around you is beginning to grow vast.

And if what is near you is far away,
Then your vastness is already among the stars and is very great;
Be happy about your growth,
In which of course
You can’t take anyone with you,
And be gentle with those who stay behind;

Be confident and calm in front of them
And don’t torment them with your doubts
And don’t frighten them with your faith or joy,
Which they wouldn’t be able to comprehend.

Seek out some simple and true feeling
Of what you have in common with them,
Which doesn’t necessarily have to alter
When you yourself change again and again;
When you see them, love life in a form that is not your own
And be indulgent toward those who are growing old,
Who are afraid of the aloneness that you trust.

Avoid providing material for the drama,
That is always stretched tight
between parent and children;
It uses up much of the children’s strength
And wastes the love of the elders,
Which acts and warms even if it doesn’t comprehend.
Don’t ask for any advice from them
And don’t expect any understanding.

But believe in a love that
Is being stored up for you like an inheritance,
And have faith that in this love
There is a strength and a blessing
So large that you can travel as far as you wish
Without having to step outside it.”

But your solitude will be a support and a home for you,
Even in the midst of very unfamiliar circumstances,
And from it you will find all your paths.
All my good wishes are ready to accompany you,
And my faith is with you.

― Rainer Maria Rilke, – Excerpt from: “Letters to a Young Poet”

GREETINGS

A very brief note of explanation for my unforeseen absence
these past three months from my Blog site;  “BREATHE FREE”.

Let’s just say I’ve been unwillingly indisposed during this time. Some people, Medical Professionals as it turns out, might even say I was ill! And having recently acquired realistic insights into who I really am – instead of the Fantasy of whom I think I am – I really couldn’t object to that diagnosis.

However indisposed or ill, I may have been – they are all in the past – and I return with an eagerness of Mind and Spirit, to my Passion and most beloved endeavor.

Thank you

OTHER VOICES

I BELIEVE

I believe in my whole race.
Yellow, White, Black, Red, Brown —
in the Honesty, Courage, Intelligence, Durability … and Goodness …
of the overwhelming majority of my Brothers and Sisters everywhere on this planet.

I am proud to be a Human Being.
I believe that we have come this far by the skin of our teeth,
that we always make it just by the skin of our teeth —
but that we will always make it … survive … endure.

I believe that this hairless embryo
with the aching, oversize brain case and the opposable thumb
this animal barely up from the apes, will endure —
will endure longer than his Home Planet,
will spread out to the other Planets, to the Stars, and beyond,
carrying with him his Honesty,
his unlimited Courage—and his Noble essential Decency.

This I believe with all my Heart.

Robert A. Heinlein-

(Excerpted from a piece he wrote for the
Edward R Murrow Radio Program, “This I Believe”)

LOVE IS

The Post, “LOVE IS”, being published today, was initially
Published on 9/26/2015.
Since today is “Love Day” and given the current
uncertainties of today’s World, I thought it
might be appropriate to publish it once again.

LOVE IS

Love is the Poet’s word,
The Composer’s song,
The Singer’s voice,
The Dancer’s form.

Love is our Word
Spoken a thousand times.
Yet when spoke once again,
Heard, as if never heard before.

Love is our Song,
Of Passion’s cry,
for dreams fulfilled
And all those yet to be.

Love is our Voice,
The silent Voice,
Of unspoken words,
Heard, within each others’ heart.

Love is our Dance,
The graceful form
Of Joy beheld;
the flourish of Life embraced.

Love is our Honesty,
Not in the absence of lies,
But in the presence of Truth,
Truth of our Thought, our Word, our Deed.

Love is our Freedom,
To feel, think, say, do,
To be everything of Value,
Without fear of rebuke or restraint,
For Our Love is not the ties that bind,
Our love is the hand,
That Frees the ties that bind.

Our Love is the totality of Openness
To be Child, Adult, Man, Woman;
To give and receive
Without, Identity lost,
Or compromise of Soul.

Our Love is not self-sacrifice or denial;
It is Self Adulation,
Joyful in the Knowledge,
Purpose and Beauty of life.
For our Love is not faults accepted,
But Virtues honored.

Our Love is not that I cannot live without you,
But that I must live with you.
Always with the presence of Mind, Heart and Soul
That Lives in each of us,
Able to comprehend
All the Beauty and Wonder of the world,
And to see the Vision, clear and bright,
Of all those things we hold Dear.

Our Love is Beauty, Clarity and Light perceived,
Felt and known within one’s self and the other.

Our Love is seeing those precious Virtues
Within the uniqueness of the other;
Our Love is the Heartbeat of Beauty,
The Breath of Wonder,
It is Life itself.

Our Love is not only a feeling of our Hearts,
It is a Judgment of our Minds,
A Commitment of our Souls,
Conscious acts of Affirmations,
Towards all we hold Dear.
A statement of but one word:   YES!
.                                                                    YES!……….. To LOVE
.                                                                    YES!……….. To BEAUTY
.                                                                    YES!……….. To JOY
.                                                                    YES!……….. To LIFE
.                                                                    YES!……….. To YOU

.                                     Created by: Edward Sollisch and Fran Wellgood.

A PERSON YET UNMET

How soon is it
A Poem to get
From someone unknown
And still unmet?

A Day – A Month – A Year
Or just a Moment in Time,
If what is said runs deep enough
From another’s Mind to Mine

As for Time,
One of Its Moments most Beautiful,
Is the Silence………
Pervading the Audience
Upon the Conductor
Raising his Baton
To begin a Concert

It is being
On the Brink
Of Creation,
Or Re-Creation,
As I await
A Universe of Sound
Emotion and Beauty.
It is Anticipation,
Of Known And Unknown Forces
Soon to touch me

So much
Like first hearing from,
Or first meeting of,
An Exceptional Person.
For who knows
What Human Emotion,
Intimacy, Joy, And Beauty,
Will Emerge?

Perhaps not for long,
Perhaps forever,
Perhaps Bliss mixed with Sadness,
But what matter,
For Anticipation and Stimulation,
And the Discovery of a Person
Of Substance and of Value
Are their own Rewards