Letters to A Young Poet.

Rainer Maria Rilke, 2000 (New World Library Edition) | 128 pages

I’m crazy about letters. To me, letters—especially hand-written ones, sent via snail mail (oh, and I love it even more when the letters are illustrated), are romantic. It levitates me: the sight of an envelope with my name written on it; the dampened stamp; the guessing of the sender; the hissing sound of the papers; the first sentence, the imaginary voice of a “Dear …”

I remembered myself, in such a young age, sending hand-written letters as an ultimate gift to people I care about the most. Later in life, it was also become clear to me that I feel more comfortable of writing stories and prose in the form of indirect letters. Letters are personal. Letters are the words left unspoken.

Letters to A Young Poet is a collection of letters written by Rainer Maria Rilke to Franz Kappuz, a young man trying to choose between a literary career and entering the army. The letters, coming from one of the greatest poet, are of course deep and poetic, spanning over the issues of dealing with self-doubts, making choices, living life, and embracing love. Reading the letters, you would feel as if the letters were directed to you.

The book is a jewel of deep and profound words, the kind of book that you’d like to pass on to your seventeen-year-old kid as they started to enter adulthood.

โ€œHave patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.” – Rilke.

Leave your traces here. I want to hear :)

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