Sunday, November 8, 2009

Milkweed Bugs

In "The Ninth Elegy" from The Essential Rilke, Rainer Maria Rilke wrote these powerful lines:

Here is the time for the sayable, here its home.
Speak and avow it. More than ever
things that can be experienced fall away,
shunted aside and superseded by unseeable acts,
acts under crusts that readily shatter
when the inner workings outgrow them and seek new
containment.
Between the hammers
our heart endures, like the tongue
between the teeth, which yet
continues to praise.

--Rainer Maria Rilke, tr. by Galway Kinnell and Hannah Liebmann

I praise these milkweed bugs (yes, that's really what they're called), observed in all their orange-red glory at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation in Cross River, New York. The photo was taken on 10/11/09. To see the milkweed bugs more clearly, simply click on the image.

The above excerpt was found on p. 133 of The Essential Rilke, translated in 1999 by Galway Kinnell and Hannah Liebmann, The Ecco Press. Rilke lived from 1875-1926.

3 comments:

Deborah Batterman said...
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Deborah Batterman said...

Oh how they remind me of their ladylike cousins invading my house . . in corners of the ceiling, on tabletops, little spotted surprises. One almost got into my salad.

Christine said...

They are beautiful. And, yes, those warmer days brought out (and in) the ladybugs. A bit of good luck, supposedly.