Rainer Maria Rilke greeted and wrestled with the angels of his Duino Elegies in the solitude of a castle surrounded by white cliffs tall trees and the sea. I greeted most of mine in the solitude of a house that still vibrated with the throbs of a singular life that had helped shape many lives and with the ache of attempts to render useful service to that life. The River of Winged Dreams was therefore constructed as a link between dimensions of past and future emotions and intellect and matter and spirit.
How they are all about, these gentlemenIn chamberlains' apparel, stocked and laced,Like night around their order's star and gemAnd growing ever darker, stony-faced,And these, their ladies, fragile, wan, but proppedHigh by their bodice, one hand loosely dropped,Small like its collar, on the toy King-Charles:How they surround each one of these who stoppedTo read and contemplate the objects d'art,Of which some pieces still are theirs, not ours.Whit exquisite decorum they allow usA life of whose dimensions we seem sureAnd which they cannot grasp. They were aliveTo bloom, that is be fair; we, to mature,That is to be of darkness and to strive.