Letters to a Young Poet

By Rainer Maria Rilke, MD Herter Norton,

Book cover of Letters to a Young Poet

Book description

Born in 1875, the great German lyric poet Rainer Maria Rilke published his first collection of poems in 1898 and went on to become renowned for his delicate depiction of the workings of the human heart. Drawn by some sympathetic note in his poems, young people often wrote to Rilke…

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Why read it?

3 authors picked Letters to a Young Poet as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

This book became a lifeline for me when I was going through an unhappily difficult and extremely stressful time. I felt as if it was written for me as a form of salve for my lack of trust in myself and my life at this point.

Rilke is wise, knowing, and reassuring about the vicissitudes of our emotional journeys. He encouraged me to hold onto myself in an emotional sense. To seek my own inner counsel and to not panic when my life seemed to unravel. I love his discourse on faith, solitude, trust, and his dissection of what it…

From Anna's list on books to touch your heart.

There’s nothing in Letters to a Young Poet about craft, writer’s block, or any of the recognizable challenges faced by twenty-first-century writers. Yet this slender volume published more than a century ago speaks to writers everywhere and in every era, who so often work in isolation and, if they are to be true to their art and authentic within themselves, must rip open their souls and spill the contents onto the page without regard for others’ judgment and criticism. In fact, it speaks to anyone, non-writer as well as writer, whose sensitivity and feelings of not belonging make it sometimes…

A slim classic from a 19th Century poet that is relevant still, for anyone writing poetry or prose. Rilke focuses on inner qualities of sensitivity, compassionate observation, and appreciation of intrinsic beauty in the world and in all people.

From Dinty's list on for inspiring beginning writers.

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