“…Everything is gestation and then bringing forth. To let each impression and each germ of a feeling come to completion wholly in itself, in the dark, in the inexpressible, the unconscious, beyond the reach of one’s own intelligence, and await with deep humility and patience the birth-hour of a new clarity: that alone is living the artist’s life: in understanding as in creating.

Rainer Maria Rilke painted by Paula Modersohn-BeckerThere is here no measuring with time, no year matters and ten years are nothing. Being an artist means, not reckoning and counting, but ripening like the tree which does not force its sap and stands confident in the storms of spring without the fear that after them may come no summer. It does come. But it comes only to the patient who are there as though eternity lay before them, so unconcernedly still and wide. I learn it daily, learn it with pain to which I am grateful: patience is everything!”

[Rediscovered journal entry from March 1984, quoting from Rainer Maria Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet, Letter 3, dated April 23, 1903, Viareggio (near Pisa), Italy.¬† Drat. I wish I had noted who did the translation.]

[Portrait of Rilke by Paul Modersohn-Becker, painted in 1900. More on the relationship between Rilke & Modersohn-Becker.]