. . . poems are not . . . simply emotions . . . they are experiences.
For the sake of a single poem, you must see many cities, many
people and things . . . and know the gestures which small
flowers make when they open in the morning. You must be able
to think back to streets in unknown neighborhoods, to
unexpected encounters, and to partings you have long seen
coming; to days of childhood whose mystery is still unexplained . . .
to mornings by the sea, to the sea itself, to seas, to nights
of travel . . . and it is still not enough.
~ from The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge by Rainer Maria Rilke*____________________________
* First published in 1910, this is the only novel Rilke wrote and is available in translation via Amazon (Vintage, 1990) and other booksellers. The full text of the novel as translated by William Needham also is available at Internet Archive. (The translation at the latter differs slightly from the quote as it appears in Ralph Freedman's Life of a Poet: Rainer Maria Rilke (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1996).)
Rainer Maria Rilke, 1875-1926