Q:Can you tell me where I can find copies of poems that are read by guests on your show (On Being)? I am thinking, in particular, of a couple of poems by Rilke from the program "A Wild Love for the World" but I do not know where to find them on the website. Thanks, Sarah
Glad to help, Sarah. Thanks for the question.
Each week’s radio show and podcast have a discrete website associated with it. In the case of Joanna Macy, who reads the Rainer Maria Rilke poems in “A Wild Love for the World” (one of my favorites), you can find them on the main page for this show’s site. If you’re unsure on how to get there, you can find it several ways at OnBeing.org: visit the program archives page or search for the title of the show or the name of the guest. Most often, a poem or a reading or a piece of music you hear in any production can be found on that show’s website.
And, if you’ll indulge me, I’d like to share one of my favorite Rilke poems that Ms. Macy recited in this show, “Onto a Vast Plain” from his Book of Hours:
You are not surprised at the force of the storm— you have seen it growing. The trees flee. Their flight sets the boulevards streaming. And you know: he whom they flee is the one you move toward. All your senses sing him, as you stand at the window. The weeks stood still in summer. The trees' blood rose. Now you feel it wants to sink back into the source of everything. You thought you could trust that power when you plucked the fruit: now it becomes a riddle again and you again a stranger. Summer was like your house: you know where each thing stood. Now you must go out into your heart as onto a vast plain. Now the immense loneliness begins. The days go numb, the wind sucks the world from your senses like withered leaves. Through the empty branches the sky remains. It is what you have. Be earth now, and evensong. Be the ground lying under that sky. Be modest now, like a thing ripened until it is real, so that he who began it all can feel you when he reaches for you.
Hope this helps!
~answered by Trent Gilliss, senior editor