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In the Image of Orpheus: RILKE - A Soul History

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In the Image of Orpheus tells the inner story of Rilke’s literary career, tracing—step-by-step—the mythopoetic journey inscribed in the interweaving lines of the poet’s life and art. Blending biography with in-depth analyses of Rilke’s poetry and prose (from his little-known Visions of Christ through Sonnets to Orpheus), the lively narrative draws on James Hillman and C. G. Jung, Plato, and Petrarch, Apuleius, Ibn Arabi, and Lou Andreas-Salomé, as it unfolds the poet-seer’s vision of the nature and destiny of the human soul—a vision as timely as it is timeless.

 

CONTENTS

 

Introduction

 

BOOK ONE ETERNAL YOUTH: Prague to Paris 

PART I: REALISM IN RELIGION 

1. Bohemian Melodies

2. Eternal Illusion

3. Laid in the Hands of Lou

4. On a Background of Gold

5. Nothing but Prayer

 

PART II: DEATH AND THE MAIDEN

6. What Bridges Lead to Images

7. Black Glint

8. The Last House

9. Strange Violin

 

BOOK TWO LOVE’S LABORS: Paris to Muzot 

PART III: BY BEAUTY AND BY FEAR

10. Stone in You and Star

11. Enchanted One

12. Döden . . . Döden

13. Tapestries, Abelone . . .

 

PART IV: BEING AND SONG

14. This Landscape that Prophesies

15 Who, if I Cried . . .

16. Full Sphere and Orb of Being

17. Hammers of the Heart

18. Pure Transcendence

19. Fountain-Mouth

20. Are We Now the Hearers

 

Afterword

Appendices