Words, Prayers, Poems, and Blessings: Rainer Maria Rilke

Over the years I've been changed through words, poems, prayers, and blessings that I've heard, read, or had spoken over me. It's one of the gifts in this world that reminds me of truth - that keeps me going on the path, that encourages me when I need it most. As beloved author Jan L. Richardson writes, 

"A blessing reminds us that God has not designed us to live by our own devices; we are bound together with one another and with all of creation, and we are called to work for the well-being of those with whom we share this life- and those who will follow. Offering a blessing is an act of profound hope. In blessing one another, we recognize and ally ourselves with the presence of God who ever works to bring about the healing of the world." 

Sometimes we just need someone to read a blessing or prayer over us. So I thought I could start implementing that here. I do this in a lot of my yoga classes and I love it. I hope it brings some hope to you who are finding us here!


This particular poem brings tears to my eyes almost every time. Especially when I'm feeling the weight of things. Especially when I wonder if God is there and if God is in me. 

Below is the one that I listen to often, read by Joanna Macy, the German-English translator of Rilke's poems: 

God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.

These are the words we dimly hear:

You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.
Embody me.

Flare up like a flame
and make big shadows I can move in.

Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don’t let yourself lose me.

Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.

Give me your hand.

Book of Hours, I 59
— Rainer Maria Rilke

May you be blessed and lifted up today. 


Abby Mortenson