Lady at Her Mirror by Rainer Maria Rilke

Translated by Len  Krisak (January 2013)


As spices blend into her sleeping-drink,

She softly melts those features loosed to sleep

Inside her mirror’s fluency, and deep

Down in it, lets her smile subside and sink.

And then she waits to watch clear liquid rise

From it, and pours the hair that she’s let down

Into the mirror. From her evening gown,

She lifts one wondrous shoulder, as her eyes

Drink from her image quietly. She takes

In what a reeling lover would who’d face

That glass filled with mistrust, and then she makes

The gesture for her maid, but not before

She finds a candle at the mirror’s base,

An armoire, and the dregs of this late hour.



Len Krisak has published in The London Magazine, The Oxonian Review, PN Review, Standpoint, Agni, The Antioch Review, The Sewanee Review, The Hudson Review, The Dark Horse, Agenda, The Hopkins Review, Commonweal, Literary Imagination, The Oxford Book of Poems on Classical Mythology, and others. His latest book is Virgil’s Eclogues, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2010.

 

To comment on this poem, please click here.

To help New English Review continue to publish translations of classic poetry such as this, please click here.

If you have enjoyed this poem and want to read more by Len Krisak, please click here.

Subscribe

Categories

A.J. Caschetta (1) Alexander Murinson (1) Bat Ye'or (6) Brex I Teer (2) Brian of London (28) Christina McIntosh (793) Conrad Black (211) David P. Gontar (7) David Solway (67) David Wemyss (1) Dexter Van Zile (73) Dr. Michael Welner (3) Emmet Scott (1) Esmerelda Weatherwax (8609) Fred Leder (1) Friederich Hanson (3) G. Murphy Donovan (49) Gary Fouse (27) Geert Wilders (10) Geoffrey Clarfield (295) Hannah Rubenstein (2) Hugh Fitzgerald (20488) Ibn Warraq (7) Ilana Freedman (2) James Como (11) Jerry Gordon (2448) Jerry Gordon and Lt. Gen. Abakar M. Abdallah (1) Jesse Sandoval (1) John Constantine (115) John Hajjar (2) John M. Joyce (371) Jonathan Hausman (4) Joseph S. Spoerl (10) Kenneth Timmerman (24) Lorna Salzman (9) Louis Rene Beres (37) Mark Anthony Signorelli (11) Mark Durie (7) Mary Jackson (5064) Matthew Hausman (21) Michael Curtis (333) Mordechai Nisan (1) NER (2487) Nidra Poller (58) Nonie Darwish (3) Norman Berdichevsky (83) Paul Weston (5) Rebecca Bynum (7009) Richard Butrick (24) Richard Kostelanetz (7) Richard L. Benkin (21) Richard L. Cravatts (5) Richard L. Rubenstein (44) Robert Harris (78) Sam Bluefarb (1) Sha’i ben-Tekoa (1) Steve Hecht (9) Ted Belman (8) The Law (90) Theodore Dalrymple (709) Thomas J. Scheff (6) Thomas Ország-Land (3) Walid Phares (20) z - all below inactive (7) z - Ares Demertzis (2) z - Andrew Bostom (74) z - Andy McCarthy (536) z - Artemis Gordon Glidden (881) z - DL Adams (21) z - John Derbyshire (1013) z - Marisol Seibold (26) z - Mark Butterworth (49) z- Robert Bove (1189) zz - Ali Sina (2)
clear